At the intersection of spirits, science, technology and cocktails
Writer | Educator | Consultant | Educator
email: cocktailwonk @ gmail.com
I began my spirited journey in 2007 with a modest home bar that grew out of control. I soon turned to writing, using my acclaimed skills of making complex topics accessible and fun. From distillation to cocktails, and spirit regulations to history, my ethos is going deep. Often this takes me into little known and overlooked topics.
Wonk: A person with an enthusiastic interest in the specialized details of a particular field
Besides my work here, I’ve also written books, commissioned works, and numerous articles for print and online publications. My writing has received Tales of the Cocktail Spirited Award nominations in four consecutive years (Best Writer, Best Publication, Best Cocktail Book.)
While my portfolio covering many topics, rum is my particular passion. The history of Caribbean rum is a favorite obsession, and I’ve written a commissioned history of London Dock and British Navy rum.
I also serve as the Community Envoy for the West Indies Rum and Spirits Producer’s Association (WIRSPA), and advise a number of cane spirits brands. I also serve as the director of Rum Curation and Education for the Museum of Distilled Spirits.
With my wife, Carrie, we wrote and published Minimalist Tiki: A Cocktail Wonk Look at Classic Libations and the Modern Tiki Vanguard, a Top Four Spirited Awards finalist for Best Cocktail Book (2020).
My passion for sprits history also extends to whiskey, and I pen the Bourbon Plus magazine Vintage column.
I also do commissioned writing projects that benefit from my subject matter expertise.
- 2020: Tales of the Cocktail Spirited Awards “Top Ten” for Best Cocktail & Spirits Writer, Best Cocktail & Spirits Publication (Cocktail Wonk), and Best New Cocktail & Bartending Book (Minimalist Tiki).
- 2019: Tales of the Cocktail Spirited Awards “Final Four” for Best Cocktail & Spirits Publication (Cocktail Wonk)
- 2018: Tales of the Cocktail Spirited Awards “Final Four” for Best Cocktail & Spirits Writer.
- 2017: Tales of the Cocktail Spirited Award “Top Ten” for Best Cocktail & Spirits Publication (Cocktail Wonk)
- Bourbon Plus (Vintage Columnist)
- Bevvy (Ruminations Column)
- Caviar Affair
- Tales of the Cocktail
- Bar Convent Brooklyn
- Bar Convent Berlin
- UK Rumfest
- Black Tot 50th Anniversary 24 Hour Event
- Miami Rum Congress
- California Rumfest
- New York Rumfest
- Tiki Oasis
- The Hukilau
- Tiki by the Sea
- US Bartenders Guild
- Imbibe Magazine’s Imbibe 75 list of people to watch in 2018.
- International Sugarcane Spirits Awards judge
- Credentialed media at Tales of the Cocktail 2015 – 2020.
- Saveur Magazine 2018 Best Drinks Blog finalist
- American Craft Spirits Association judge, 2017
- Miami Run Renaissance judge, 2016
- Author and Rum Reviewer for at Distiller.
- Featured in Punch’s Home Bartending Goes Hardcore
In a prior life, I authored several books and hundreds of articles on Microsoft Windows, reverse engineering, and software development. At the time, I was internationally recognized as one of the world’s foremost experts on the topic.
An integral part of Cocktail Wonk is Mrs. Wonk (aka, Carrie in her civilian life), who provides sage advice, storytelling wisdom, copy-editing and humorous asides.