Craft cocktail enthusiasts, rejoice! There's a new bitters and barware store in Santa Barbara, and it has everything you need to host the swankiest happy hour in town.
Still (as in the piece of equipment used to turn corn and/or other ingredients into ethanol, a.k.a booze) has a cozy little storefront just a block from Paseo Nuevo Mall, where owner Jeremy Bohrer sells muddlers, vintage barware, hard-to-find bitters and shrubs and much more.
The shelves at Still are packed with everything you need to make a sophisticated cocktail at home — Photo courtesy of Still
The shelves that line the walls at Still are neatly stocked with cocktail shakers, jiggers, straws, spoons, picks and all the other cocktail accessories required to make a better-than-average drink in the comfort of your own home.
This retail space sells specialty glassware, too, like perfectly weighted rocks glasses from Japan. Rare vintage and mid-century cocktail sets are also displayed for sale around the shop.
Looking for a lovely set of vintage champagne saucers for a special occasion? Look no further. Still is a genius place to pick up a stylish hostess or birthday gift for the imbibers in your life.
While browsing Still, be sure to take the time to visit their unique bitters tasting bar. Bitters are an extract of herbs and other botanicals used by the dash to add flavor to drinks.
You may already be familiar with Angostura bitters, that yellow-capped bottle often splashed by bartenders into a Manhattan or Old Fashioned. But chances are you're not familiar with the wide variety of bitters being made today, from rootbeer and celery to chocolate and lavender.
Step up to the tasting bar to try them all, and you may find yourself taking a tincture or two home with you. (Don't worry, most bitters bottles are small and airplane friendly.)
Not sure what to make with those cardamom bitters you fell in love with? Just ask Bohrer. With over 15 years in the beverage industry, he has more than a few ideas for great cocktails.
In addition to bitters, Still has many other cocktail mixers, including shrubs, sodas and syrups.
Still is open Tuesday through Sunday from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. There's limited free street parking out front, or you can pop into one of several nearby city parking lots.
Dozens of other Santa Barbara shops and restaurants are within easy walking distance. If you find yourself with a thirst to quench after visiting Still, simply cross the street to the Paradise Cafe to enjoy a cocktail. This somewhat hidden bar and restaurant is a local favorite.