• ART IN A BOTTLE: The Business Behind Beer, Wine, Spirits & Condiment Brands

    Upcoming Events...

    Maker's Roundtable: World of Glass

    February 2, 10am - 2pm
    $20 - Lunch Provided

    This gathering will focus primarily on glass containers. What we put in them and how we present them to the world.

    Seats limited.

    Maker's Roundtable: Container Magic

    March 2, 10am - 2pm
    $20 - Lunch Provided

    This gathering will focus primarily on the outer packaging and other design elements. Not just glass, but metals, plastics and more.

    Seats limited.

  • About the Maker's Roundtables

    We will feature 8-10 makers who will talk about their experiences in a small intimate setting. We make every attempt to assemble a diverse group that not only learns from each other, but gives students and/or aspiring makers a front row seat to their thoughts about the business.

    This is a four-part conversation...

    The Special Sauce


    What makes your product different? Without giving away the secret formula, how do you create a product that can stand out in the market.

    Container Love


    Beverages and condiments come in all types of containers, and they are becoming more art than function. Learn what can and can't be done, as well as what's on the horizon.

    Promoting the Brand


    Learn from people on the front line, doing activations and finding creative ways to get the brand out in front. What kind of marketing efforts make this happen?

    Delivering Magic


    It's not always realistic to have your own distillery, brewery or plant. Learn from some great people how they made the jump from small batch to larger scale distribution.

  • AIAB $999 Design Contest

    Have an idea for a beverage or condiment brand? Download the form to enter the $999 contest. Share your concept by February 1 and you could win some money!

  • Friday Program - Nov. 16, 2018

    *Subject to change


    DOORS OPEN 9:00am
    REMARKS 10:00am

    Beverage Innovations

    FRIDAY 10:15am w/ Ekua Cant + Sam Grigg + Jarrett McGovern + Kevin Herson + Allie Dancy
    There's a lot of innovation out there that is improving access to a range of products. From apps that track our wine interests to smarter ingredients, what's moving the needle? What are innovations in getting beverages to consumers?

    Beans & Leaves

    FRIDAY 11:00am w/ AnnaRose Rotondi-Kauser + Jarrett McGovern + Sam Grigg + Allie Dancy
    There's so much going on before the coffee or tea makes it into your cup. Are there too many coffee shops? What about tea? Does it really matter if they sell 'fair trade'? Learn from those that do it best!


    FRIDAY 11:45am-12:15pm

    Getting on the Shelf

    FRIDAY 12:15pm with Theo Peck + Kelli Foster + Kevin Herson

    Learn from people negotiating deals every day. How do you get on the shelf at eye level? How do you get a product right behind the bartender so that guests see it? How do we get a condiment bottle on every table? What kind of marketing efforts make this happen?

    Brand Ambassadors

    FRIDAY 1:00pm w/ Mariuxi Tapia + Brandon Alexander + Kelli Foster
    What is life like visiting hundreds of venues each week? Learn from the people that do it and discuss what success looks like for beverage and condiment brands.

    Getting it There

    FRIDAY 1:45pm w/ Kelli Foster + Brandon Alexander + Sam Grigg

    What are distributors looking for in a product? What are differences between the companies that deliver product each day? Learn from those who do this all over the Tri-State area.

    Closing Q&A

    FRIDAY 2:30pm-3:00pm
    We will gather for a closing conversation and Q&A with panelists.

    Tasting Night

    FRIDAY 5:00pm-8:00pm
    Join us for over twenty tasting options, sampling many of the bottles on display during AIAB. Separate ticket from day program, must be 21+. Panelists free of course!

  • 2018 Speakers

    This year we had another great lineup of speakers!

    Brandon Alexander

    North Eastern Regional Manager, San Gabriel Beverage Group

    Prior to joining the San Gabriel Family, Brandon began his career at Diageo selling and marketing global brands such as Ketel One, Captain Morgan and Baileys. After 5 years of success, he was offered the opportunity to lead the retail execution for Mars Chocolate in 10 states. He negotiated contracts with regional managers at the leading grocery retailers to grow Mars’ share and volume. Moving back to NY allowed him to join San Gabriel and he’s excited to use his leadership to bring value to wholesalers through depletions and to retailers through our innovative wines and cocktail programs.

    Ekua Cant

    Founder, DrinksBot - @TheDrinksBot

    Ekua lives to make people happy. A career chameleon, Ekua started her career as a personal assistant in the UK Civil Service. During her tenure she was part of the award winning team that transformed the UK’s voter registration system from paper to online. In a related pursuit, Ekua was awarded a ticket to Barack Obama’s acceptance for the nomination to the Democratic party for her campaigning work for the civic voluntary organization DCVote. While working in the Civil Service she founded two startups, Layover Adventure and the Hackathon Queen. DrinksBot was founded on Valentine's Day for office workers to wind down after a long hard week. This became an on-demand drinks delivery service that provides a “Happy Hour” for your office. Outside of her entrepreneurial pursuits, Ekua is an avid runner and successfully completed the London Marathon in 2018. She also volunteers with the organization WSUP that helps homeless people near her home. Ekua always has a listening ear to advise and provide career coaching for those in need of guidance.

    Allie Dancy

    Director of Education, Devocion Coffee

    Alexandria began her journey with coffee over 8 years ago managing neighborhood cafes then found a home with Devocion in 2016 as a barista. There she honed her craft and expanded her coffee knowledge before becoming Director Of Education. Her passion is encouraging baristas to think about the what’s behind a cup of freshly brewed coffee and focus on the journey of all the moving parts before the beans are served.

    Kelli Foster

    Director of Brand Management, Red Jacket Orchards

    Kelli joined the family-owned, Geneva-based company in the spring of 2014. She works closely with the Nicholson Family; overseeing brand development in the company’s bid for national expansion of its cold pressed juice line. Kelli plays an active role in all aspects of Red Jacket’s growth as the head of both trade and consumer marketing, and a key player in business development and R&D. Kelli studied Business at the undergraduate and postgraduate level, earning both her Bachelor of Science and Masters in Business Administration from The University at Buffalo in New York. Kelli’s professional endeavors stretch across New York State from Buffalo to Manhattan, and she brings a sound understanding of emerging brands, with focus on the CPG industry.

    Sam Grigg

    VP Americas, List & Beisler

    Hailing from the fatuously self-proclaimed flat-white coffee capital of the world, Melbourne, Australia, Sam began his coffee career in the central highlands of Vietnam, where his first role included supervising the unloading of coffee bags, and often people, from incoming trucks during the harvest. Sam has since lived and worked in some of the world’s most beautiful coffee producing countries, including India and Colombia; overseeing green coffee exports for a large multinational. He is a current board member for a prominent INGO that focuses on sustainable SME finance; where coffee provides a dependable source of income for hundreds of thousands of smallholder families. Now based in New York, Sam is head of operations for a leading speciality coffee importer that procures green coffee actively sourced from 25 origins across the globe.

    Kevin Herson

    Owner/Distiller, Doc Herson’s Natural Spirits

    Founded by a husband and wife team in a Harlem basement in 2012, Doc Herson's Natural Spirits is the 1st Absinthe Distillery in New York City. Over the years they have expanded their product line and now produce a variety of botanical spirits including three unique styles of Absinthe as well as three distinct Liqueurs. Science, food and travel have always led Kevin Herson through interesting endeavors. From backpacking the world, to advance studies of chemistry and the sciences, to botany, gardening and cooking; these experiences have provided the knowledge and inspiration for distilling the variety of high quality botanical spirits produced by Doc Herson's today. From farm ingredients to fermentation, to maceration, distillation, bottling and branding; They do everything 100% in house. All natural and plant based with no artificial ingredients, flavoring nor coloring.

    Earl Holloway

    Creative Director, KCBC - Kings County Brewers Collective

    Originally from San Francisco, Earl spent his early days on a dead end street on Patrero Hill with an odd mix between project housing, auto body repair yards, hippies and a theatrical stage designing and fabricating shop. His family split up so he moved back east in the late eighties, joined the military after high school and then went on to go to school for illustration and painting. It took many years of hard work and disappointment to eventually make it to where he is now.

    Julian Levine

    Co-Founder and CEO, Twice

    As CEO, Julian leads Twice’s comprehensive business strategy, product development and vision for the future. Working with the company’s two other co-founders, Julian drives Twice’s goal of becoming the leading morning and night toothpaste brand. Julian and Twice’s co-founders, Cody Levine and Lenny Kravitz, had a life-changing experience in 2016 while on a volunteer mission helping a community without proper access to dental care unlock the power of their smiles. The three teamed up to create a better-for-you product to improve the oral hygiene crisis, and a brand with a focus of giving healthy smiles to those in need through social impact initiatives. Twice is reimagining the oral care industry with a wellness-focused, morning and night approach. A former finance professional, Julian was an investor in consumer and tech companies at a leading growth equity fund, Stripes Group, and in prior worked as an investment banker at Bank of America Merrill Lynch and North Point Advisors from where he focused on advising consumer brands through their financing journeys.

    Jarrett McGovern

    Jarrett McGovern is a Cornell grad and Co-Founder of Rise Brewing Co. His mission to create the best tasting coffee imaginable began in 2014, while working for a water filtration company he began brewing and kegging nitro cold brew coffee in his apartment in New York City. He teamed up with Co-Founders Grant Gyesky and Justin Weinstein and turned Gyesky's garage into a nitro cold brewing facility while selling door to door in New York City introducing the city that never sleeps to "Nitro Cold Brew Coffee". Within a year they raised enough profits to build their own full scale Brewery in Stamford, CT with a mission to nitro cold brew with only organic ingredients and achieve incredible taste. His focus has been on product development and branding ever since. He lives in CT with his wife Rose Anna and daughter Layla.

    Theo Peck

    Owner, Peck's

    The path that led to Peck’s has not been a straight one. Theo's great grandfather opened Ratner’s restaurant on the Lower East Side in 1904. Theo grew up 'in the business,' taking cooking classes when he was just twelve years old. Fast forward to the 90’s, and he opened Lansky Lounge, a bar which earned some acclaim in the industry. After a short stay in Taos, New Mexico as a professional skier (a.k.a. ski bum), he hurried back East and enrolled in culinary school to start the next chapter of his life. After stints cooking at Blue Hill at Stone Barns, and Hugo’s and Fore Street of Maine, he started a national tour of amateur cooking competitions that took him from Austin, Texas to Stockholm, Sweden. After selling that company he found an opportunity in his neighborhood to open a business - Peck's Homemade. It was a chance to work close to his family and be part of the community.

    Romy Raad

    Co-Founder, Metabrew

    Romy was born and raised in Lebanon, a country very rich in food culture and inhabited by ambitious lovers of life. She speaks Arabic, French, and English fluently and played the piano semi-professionally for 13 years. Raised by her mother’s & grandmother’s cooking and inspired by her father’s entrepreneurial journey, she naturally expresses her hospitality through food and has always dreamt of starting her own food venture. She completed a B.A. in Graphic Design at the American University of Beirut and worked as a senior designer at a boutique agency in Lebanon. Driven by her desire to learn how to run a business, she moved to NYC to do a Masters in Strategic Design and Management at Parsons, The New School. She has worked as a business developer and brand consultant at Favoreat, a radical design boutique studio in Brooklyn. There, she collaborated closely with culinary thinkers, designers & explorers, using food as a lifestyle to create successful business experiences. She also developed brand strategies for major CPG Food & Beverage companies like LVMH (Newton Wine), Jacquet Bakery, and Little Ducks Organic, before starting her current superfood beverage startup Metabrew alongside her business partner Natalie.

    Sandro Roco

    Founder, Sanzo

    Sanzo is the first Asian-inspired line of flavored sparkling water in the U.S. After graduating with a degree in chemical engineering from Villanova University, he had roles at a nuclear power plant in southeast PA and on the trading floor at J.P. Morgan. Eventually, he caught the startup bug and has led growth at Bombfell, an online personal styling service for men, helping the company rank #15 on Crain's NYC Fast 50 in 2017 and land on Vogue and The Lead's Foremost 50 in 2018.

    AnnaRose Rotondi-Kauser

    TEA.E.O. Visionary. Master Blender. Pillow Lover. Seashell Collector. Mompreneur. Lightning Bolt.

    AnnaRose Rotondi-Kauser is the owner and founder of Oh You, TEAse. As an avid tea lover with an entrepreneurial spirit, she allowed herself to follow her dreams and launch her company in May of 2016. While she may be new to the scene as a business owner, she has been blending, experimenting with and creating custom teas for over a decade. AnnaRose is fun, cheerful and optimistic and she truly aims to infuse those characteristics into her tea. Her philosophy is that tea should be fun and bring happiness to all those who drink it.

    Mariuxi Tapia

    Marketing Manager, Brooklyn Food and Beverage

    Mariuxi Tapia is the Marketing Manager of Brooklyn Food and Beverage, a manufacturing and distribution company in Bushwick, Brooklyn. Home to the local craft soda Bruce Cost Ginger Ale and now Brooklyn Crafted and reTREAT brands as well. Her degree in Psychology combined with her field marketing experience has gotten her to where she is now. She has worked with brands such as Barefoot Wines, VitaCoco, and Absolut in aiding to launch experiential campaigns. Getting people excited about a brand and how to attack it from all sides is the best part of marketing. As an avid foodie and native New Yorker she is always looking to check out the new latest trend in food, beverage, spirit, and lifestyle.

  • Some Videos We Love

    Take a look and enjoy!

    Stranahan's Batch 90 Volunteer Bottling

    New Made Shop Label

    A Slow Film on Alsace & Wine

    The love of wine is universal...

  • What's it all about??

    Two tasting nights and one big day of workshops. They say a picture's worth a 1000 words, so here's 12k!!

  • Elements

    Events of great monument often hang on trifles - anonymous

    Panels & Roundtables

    Throughout the conference we will invite you to hear stories from those in the biz... great tales of success and failure.

    The Museum

    You can learn more from bottles and other containers that you can see (and maybe touch) than just what you see in pictures. We are curating our very own museum of containers, from 1970s 7-Up bottles to the newest beer growlers. Bring yours!!

    The Bookstore

    There are so many great books out there, but who wants to wait for Amazon to deliver them? We've created a small collection available for inspiration and admiration. Old and new titles ranging from packaging design to unique wine regions.


    The Business Behind Beer, Wine, Spirits & Condiment Brands

    People buy beverage brands and related products because of what's on the outside and what's on the inside. For some consumers, they make decisions about the contents - they are all about the ingredients and taste. For others, the way the container looks (material, label, name) is key. They also want the story - what is behind the brand? And then there's what lies in-between. What is the special sauce that makes their product different from others? This event brings the makers and sellers of these products together in one place - an educational space where everyone can learn together!

    Packaging Science aka Container Love

    There's a science that goes into creating a beautiful container. Whether you're launching your own artisan honey or craft beer, you have a shape and material in mind. Most of the people that create these containers don't actually have a background in packaging science, so our goal is to bring enough people together that have done so that everyone walks away with a new skill set...

    Creative Writing aka The Spiel

    As you create a brand, you should also be crafting a story that communicates who you are. Some brands have natural and original stories while others have worked hard to come up with one. Throughout the symposium you will see and hear these stories. They will be on display and also shared with you verbally. Let's all learn from each other...

    Production aka Special Sauce

    There is a way of doing things that may or may not be visible to the naked eye. This is where formulas, strange procedures, secret recipes and other tricks of the trade help differentiate a brand from the rest. Some call it magic, others call it intellectual property. We call it cool...

  • Partners

    Let's find some synergy...

    How Can We Work Together?

    AIAB seeks partners, not just sponsors. Our goal is to create an intimate environment that offers partners not only opportunities to connect with attendees and provide an opportunity to celebrate your company's contribution to the hospitality industry. We seek a win-win for our attendees and the companies/organizations that choose to align themselves with us. Sound good? Download packet HERE or email us at partners@aiab.info

  • Connect

    Click on the pretty icons...