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On this week’s The NOLADrinks Show with Bryan Dias, we have two great interviews! We chat with Jackie Summers, aka Jack from Brooklyn, about a terrific virtual happy hour he co-founded. Then, we’re joined by spirits expert and educator, Danny Ronen, about easy ways to broaden your cocktail making at home!

Pictured above from left – Danny Ronen and Jackie Summers.

NOLADrinks Show – Jackie Summers and Danny Ronen – Apr20Ep1

We start things off mentioning a couple things about being a good citizen during these times. We also let you know what’s up on this week’s show.

Then, we have our first of two featured interviews. We welcome Jackie Summers, also known as Jack from Brooklyn. Jackie is a person of many talents – a writer, entrepreneur, and public speaker – who is very tied into the spirits and hospitality industries. Among other things, he created Sorel Liqueur and was named one of “100 Most Influential Bar Industry Figures” by Drinks International Magazine in 2019.

We discuss the virtual happy hour, “Dani and Jackie’s Virtual Happy Hour,” he co-founded with friends, media personality, Daniella Veras, and Cocktail and Sons CEO, Lauren Myerscough.

It’s a great and fun concept where bartenders make drinks (and teach you how) and you can tip them actual money for their efforts. They also bring in experts from other fields, such as personal wellness and personal finance, to chat and field questions.

Pictured above – Media Personality and Co-Founder of Dani & Jackie’s Virtual Happy Hour – Daniella Veras.

Pictured above – CEO of Cocktail and Sons and Co-Founder of Dani & Jackie’s Virtual Happy Hour – Lauren Myerscough.

We talk about being good community members and also note how the effects on many in the hospitality industry have been and continue to be especially harsh. Jackie sticks round for “Another Shot with NOLADrinks” where we continue the chat!

Next up, we welcome spirits educator, expert, and consultant, Danny Ronen of DC Spirits, calling in from his residence in Oakland, California. We let you know some good ways to make great cocktails at home without needing a ton of ingredients. We also talk about fun ways to create your own cocktail concoctions!

First up, we talk about the classic drink – the negroni. We discuss a great way to vary that drink simply by swapping out the base spirit (many of these variations have become new classics in their own right.) Then, Danny shares with us some ideas for utilizing rum and a small number of other ingredients to create some different and tasty drinks!

Then, we move into our podcast-only segment, “Another Shot with NOLADrinks.” Danny sticks with us and we talk about how to play a game using dice to create your own cocktails. You can see more on that below. We touch on ideas of how to improve your tasting skills, some cool home bar kits from Shaker and Spoon, and more. Also, as mentioned above, we circle back with Jackie Summers to continue our conversation.

Be well, be safe, take care of each other, and heed the advice of competent officials and scientists! You can subscribe to, stream, and download The NOLADrinks Show with Bryan Dias podcast using the links and player at the top of the post.

Cheers and Be Well, You All!

~ Bryan

Roll the Dice – Make a Drink!

Some tips from Danny: There are obviously just suggestions of more common items (e.g., Die #1, you could do Tequila/Mezcal, or change Brandy to “Grape Distillate” to include Cognac, Pisco and Singani, and Die #2 can include Lillet and other non-red Aperitivi), the player can change to whatever they’d like, and more importantly, what they have on hand. Also, always apply common sense and if it doesn’t sound good, make an alteration or try again. Of course, as well, you can easily adapt to what you have and you can also tweak the standard negroni ratio of 1-1-1 according to taste!


1 – Gin

2 – Vodka

3 – Tequila

4 – Bourbon/Rye

5 – Rum

6 – Brandy


1 – Campari

2 – Braulio

3 – Aperol

4 – Cynar

5 – Luxardo Bitter

6 – Leopold Bros Aperitivo


1 – Sweet Vermouth

2 – Dry Vermouth

3 – Bianco Vermouth

4 – Sweet Vermouth

5 – Dry Vermouth

6 – Bianco Vermouth