When mixologists Marcos Tello and Garrett McKechnie were tasked to develop a dynamic beverage program using only organic ingredients and without refined sugar, they inadvertently stumbled upon something great: flavorful, satisfying adult beverages that are naturally better for you.
FEED Body & Soul’s organic creations are made with seasonal ingredients and all-natural sweeteners, translating to fewer calories, chemicals and preservatives in your margarita glass.
“The most calories in any drink on the menu is probably less than what's in a can of soda,” explains Tello. “This is significantly less than a lot of cocktails that can double and even triple that amount.”
Instead of the commercial syrups and processed cane sugar typically found in most cocktails, FEED uses sweeteners like agave, honey and real fruit juices, many of which are freshly squeezed.
When Tello and McKechnie, both of Tello Demarest Liquid Assets, the creative consultancy behind downtown L.A.’s Seven Grand Whiskey Bar and Pasadena’s 1886 Bar, could not find the organic ingredients they needed, they created them.
They contracted Miracle Miles Bitters, for example, to produce organic replicas of Angostura, Peychaud and orange bitters. They soak their own organic maraschino cherries and age their own organic rum. Their organic sweet vermouth? Also house made.
“All those elements are extra steps we went through to fill holes we found in the program,” explains Tello.
In staying consistent with the restaurant’s mantra, the bar serves up several seasonal cocktails in addition to popular staples, such as their Celery Root Collins and Moscow Mule. During the colder months, patrons can enjoy a minty Satsuma Whiskey Smash or aromatic Meyer Lemon Gimlet.
With the weather warming up, an organic Bloody Mary has made its way onto the menu, among other new additions the restaurant is excited to debut.
As word spreads about FEED’s “skinny” cocktails, Tello sets the record straight: “We did not set out to create low-calorie cocktails. We just set out to make the best seasonal and classic cocktail program with an organic and non-refined sugar point-of-view.”
To Tello and McKechnie, whose main objective has always been to create delicious-tasting drinks, the fact that guests can feel better about what they’re drinking as a by-product of their work is simply a happy bonus.