DRINK OF THE MOMENT: MAN-O-WAR COCKTAIL + alt summit speakeasy



If you are new to Dear Handmade Life, or my old blog, you may not know that for the past five years I have been trekking out to Kentucky and Tennessee for the longest yard sale otherwise known as the 127 yard sale. Yes, there is a lot of picking and junking on the route, but over the years our trip has started to venture outside of 127 path. This past Summer, we decided to stay for a few days in Louisville, KY.

On our first night at the Brown Hotel in their adorable little bar in the lobby, we couldn’t help but order a bourbon cocktail- we were right in the middle of bourbon country after all!  Typically, I am not a fan of bourbon cocktails, for the most part (or at least the ones i’ve tried) they are too strong or bitter for my taste, but I saw a bourbon drink with lime and decided to try it. I’m so glad i did! It became my go-to drink while in Louisville.

I haven’t seen the Man-O-War (named after the famous racehorse) offered in bars outside Louisville, but I thought it would be perfect to mix up for our guests at our Speakeasy Party at Alt Summit. Below is the recipe for two cocktails. If you are a fan of sour, this is your drink! The recipe is from liquor.com but I altered it by using lime juice, I have seen recipes with lemon and orange- experiment!

-delilah snell

Below you’ll find the recipe for the Man-O-War as well as some photos from our speakeasy at Alt Summit. Anyone who has been to a conference knows how hectic it can be… Running from workshop to workshop and trying to find time to connect with new and old friends. This year we decided to have a little party in our hotel room to ensure we got to spend some time with friends and Craftcation speakers who were also attending, as well as meet some new people. Delilah shipped out tons of decorations, some of our favorite card games including Cards vs. Humanity and some vintage bar-ware she picked up on her last 127 trip. I drew up cocktail recipe cards. We sent out a few emails to friends we knew would be at Alt and viola – our speakeasy was born.

Originally it was just going to be on the first night of the conference but it was so well-received that the speakeasy was open every night! We were excited to find out we weren’t the only ones who were having hotel room hang-outs at Alt. Some of our guests had been to other hotel room shindigs. One of them told us that someone had organized a hotel room party and invited people who all lived in the same city. What a great idea! We all spend so much time connecting online and it was awesome to hear that someone facilitated a party for people who have the potential to hang out in person after the conference.

We’re so glad we hosted our speakeasy! One of the best things about attending a conference like this is the connections you make with fellow creatives. If you don’t know what I mean (or even if you do) you should read my post about my experience at Camp Mighty. *Added bonus: I also talk about getting my underwear frozen at my first slumber party in the post. Taking the time (and money) to attend conferences and retreats is paramount for busy entrepreneurs. There are so many benefits, as I talk about in my post on why I attend conferences. We all need to take a break from the hustle of running our own businesses and juggling our personal lives. If you’re coming to Craftcation in April, feel free to organize your own hotel room speakeasy! We hope you tell us the secret password…shhhh! 🙂

-nicole s.

P.S. – BIG thanks to all the awesome chicas who came to our speakeasy + an extra special thanks to Craftcation presenter and Alt Summit party host Brittni Mehlhoff of Paper n Stitch who was sweet enough to let us steal all her balloons when her party was over.

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  1. Miriam: you totally should!! i am working on a post on how to host your own speakeasy 🙂
    many people said it was the best time of the conference and we saved $ too.

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