“Hi! Thanks for stopping by today. How can I help you?” Islamorada Beer Co. (IBC) bartender Caitlin Perdomo encourages people passing by on the Overseas Highway to enjoy some “Isolation Hydration.”
Rather than welcoming customers into the brewery and distillery building, which no longer serves food or drinks amid coronavirus fears, the friendly face offers a sanitized, laminated menu of IBC’s available drinks to-go from a tiki hut bar in the front parking lot.
Featured are IBC’s new cocktail pouches to go, which are freshly made, personal cocktail servings you can take with you. That’s right — they’ve invented the adult Capri-Sun.
Manager Larisa Baste tells the Weekly, “It’s a single-serving to go, or we can fill a growler size. It’s all labeled and sold at certain sizes.”
Perdomo shows off a Pirate’s Rum Punch, one of the more recent favorites. “It’s heat-sealed shut, so it’s considered a ‘closed container’ that you can take with you in the car,” she explains. “And, it’s a little boozier than if you came into the bar,” she adds with a wink.
IBC actually started selling the “personal party packs” two months ago, so the framework for it was already in place, said Baste. Now, with the dine-in shutdown, they’ve expanded to offer lots of other drinks to go.
“Key lime pie martinis, bloody marys … we’ve got a lot more than just our cocktails on tap, all bagged to go with you.”
The response has been great so far, with people sharing pictures of rum punch bags on their boats and at home. Perdomo estimates she sold out of nearly 100 pouches in the last three to four days.
IBC is also offering free hot dogs, no purchase necessary. They aren’t advertising it because they don’t want to take business away from local restaurants but wanted to provide a little extra where they can.
“It gives me goosebumps,” Perdomo says of being able to give free food to a mom with kids and an older woman who’d lost her job.
Of the new offerings, Baste said, “People are in a weird headspace. It’s very stressful. These are good ways to keep ourselves employed and offer something to the people.”
“The company and all our staff really care about this community and want to see it survive and thrive. We’re here and hanging in and hope everyone else is, too,” Baste said.
The cocktails and all IBC products are available in person or with online ordering at orderibc.com for curbside pickup or delivery.