When AvroKO turns its Bowery restaurant Double Crown into Saxon + Parole later on this year, that’s not the only thing they’ll be creating. In September, the design consultancy is also launching a proprietary brand of whiskey called Parole.
“We’ve always been very passionate about all levels of the hospitality industry, from design, food, drinks, to lifestyle,” explains Linden Pride, one member of AvroKO. “We have always loved the idea of making our own liquor and at one stage considered housing a small still in one of our venues.” The result? A 90-proof rye whiskey that’s been aged for two years in new American Oak barrels, and that showcases flavors of nuts, tart cherry and leather. It’s being made in conjunction with a boutique Brooklyn distillery whose name will be released when the bottles hit shelves.
And while Saxon + Parole might sound like the name of the fall’s newest police drama on TNT, the whiskey’s (and restaurant’s) name actually harkens back to an old-time racehorse. “We were also inspired by the actual namesake Parole, who from most accounts was a scrappy brown pony that shocked the nation with his awkward look and disposition as a racehorse but unrelenting ability to win against the odds,” explains Kristina O’Neal, another AvroKO designer. “The fact that there was a whiskey under his name, that was produced here in New York during Parole’s heyday, was enough of an incentive to bring the brand back.” Looks like this one might be something to bet on.