The modern cocktail trend has experienced explosive growth in recent years, with cocktail enthusiasts, whether bar professionals or seasoned drinkers, continuing to indulge in various tangible and intangible interactions, creating an endlessly delightful flavor in contemporary cocktail culture.
As more and more consumers emphasize and understand the cocktail culture, the professionalism surrounding cocktails has far surpassed the past. Beyond the flavor complexity brought by basic techniques, there is a growing desire for more drinking experiences. This consumer perception, including hardware and software elements, often becomes the highlight of enhancing the consumption process. Given this, within the trend of pursuing cocktail content, some have begun to ponder other factors in the drinking culture experience—the bar station, also known as the cocktail workstation, behind a horizontal board.
Alex Kratena and Monica Berg, co-owners of Tayēr + Elementary, awarded second place in the 2021 World's 50 Best Bars, began to contemplate this issue when opening their establishment. In this ever-evolving cocktail trend, how could bar design be changed?
"In the daytime, it transforms into an elegant and comfortable workspace. You can enjoy simple snacks and coffee while leisurely browsing the internet with high-speed Wi-Fi. In the evening, it morphs into the favorite cocktail workstation for bartenders.”
Built on this concept, the bar workstation, filled with movable hexagonal steel boxes that can be freely assembled and configured, became one of Tayēr + Elementary's distinctive features.
Tayēr Cocktail Workstation Design Concept
Their extensive experience in the beverage industry led them to consider many changes to existing bar designs. Inspired by the kitchen design of the renowned Danish restaurant Noma and the workstation at the well-known American bar The Aviary, the duo began to shape the developing concept of a new bar workstation for modern cocktails.
"All good designs draw inspiration from nature.”
In their conceptual brainstorming, they discovered the wonder of biomimicry. They referenced the hexagonal honeycomb bees' use to store honey to create sufficient flexibility, efficiency, and storage space. They found that the hexagonal shape was sturdier and more efficient than other shapes, making it a perfect form in nature. Therefore, with its combination of elastic space, stable structure, and high flexibility, hexagonal steel became their ultimate answer.
"Hexagons can hold more bottles than any other shape. This result became a crucial reference in our entire design.”
Biomimicry, derived from the Greek word "Bio," involves imitating the 3.8 billion years of evolution in biology, ecosystems, and forms to achieve better efficiency with fewer resources. Examples include solar power generation inspired by photosynthesis, the unique water resistance of shark skin that saves energy for transport ships, radar sonar inspired by bats and dolphins, and even air conditioning design concepts from termites.
High Flexibility in Combination and Variation
Modularity is a crucial concept in the design of Tayēr's cocktail workstation. Users can adjust the number, position, size, and placement of hexagonal steel according to their needs, even adapting to bartenders' dominant hand (left or right) and preferred grabbing habits (straight or circular) at any time.
Improved Efficiency and Optimized Storage Space
Tailored configurations for users ensure that everything needed for crafting each cocktail is conveniently placed. Various pre-mix ingredients, syrups, spices, garnishes, and cocktail tools can be stored in more spaces than traditional workstations.
"Everything is well-organized and within your reach.”
Creating a Unique Drinking Experience
Like an open kitchen, the entire process of crafting cocktails is visible to consumers. The design of Tayēr's cocktail workstation eliminates the traditional "barrier" between bartenders and consumers, fostering a chat-friendly and interactive atmosphere where the perfect moments of service often occur in this comfortable and relaxed setting.
Enhancing efficiency, increasing interaction, and enriching the drinking experience—is this the future trend in cocktail workstation design for bars? You have the opportunity to experience similar cocktail workstations in the following bars that have adopted the same or similar designs:
Shanghai, ex stock
They have professional equipment for many in-house homemade materials using the Central Island cocktail workstation design. ex stock showcases cocktail expertise and passion while offering various classic or signature cocktail recipes and adaptations. It is a popular bar worth exploring for cocktail enthusiasts.
Moscow, Inside Bar
Photo credit: Alexey Proshkin
Featuring a large Central Island cocktail workstation on three sides, Inside Bar aims to bring consumers up close to interact and experience the professional mixology skills of bartenders. The seamless design makes the entire workstation more like a perfect work of art, with functional storage spaces and platforms that allow bartenders to unleash more excellent creative concepts.
Oslo, Williamsburg Bab & Beer
Photo credit: Carl Filip Olsson
This bar in Norway boasts more than enough storage space, and its unique "One-Step Philosophy" aims to allow bartenders to complete all cocktail orders on the menu without moving more than one step, even during busy periods with high customer flow. With glasses, ice, and ingredients all within easy reach, this bar is a dream for efficiency.