CocktailSafe is a site dedicated to safer cocktails - safety in ingredients and in techniques. Much of the fun in creating cocktails is in experimentation with new/unfamiliar ingredients and techniques. But some of those ingredients, even though they may be in commercial products, are regulated in quantity or processed in a way to make them safe to consume.
Recipes in old cocktail books (and even in some new foraging books) frequently include dangerous/poison/regulated plants or additives that have since been banned for food use. But when one attempts to look up the safety of many ingredients (and techniques) the internet is full of not-so-great information and confusing language on government regulatory websites.
CocktailSafe aspires to be a thoroughly researched one-stop-shop for information about safety in cocktails.
The website will focus both on safety and legality of ingredients used, initially focussing on US law but hopefully expanding to EU laws going forward.
The idea for this website developed over several years when we saw bartenders using illegal and/or potentially unsafe ingredients like tobacco bitters and homemade tonic water in cocktails, and seemingly unsafe handling of liquid nitrogen and non-food safe containers. This lead to a seminar at Tales of the Cocktail lead by Camper English and Avery Glasser, a Facebook discussion group called First Do No Harm, and several articles written about the topic in various publications.
CocktailSafe is the project of Camper English, with Avery Glasser consulting. The project is supported by a grant from the Tales of the Cocktail Foundation.
The site was launched in December 2018 and will be built out over the coming months. There's a lot of work to do, so please pardon the incomplete entries as we work on it. To be kept up to date on new entries and topics for discussion, please subscribe to the RSS feed or the email newsletter.
About Camper English
Camper English is a cocktails and spirits journalist and educator with a particular interest in science and technology. He has contributed to numerous publications and his own website is Alcademics.com. Learn more about Camper's work at this link.
About Avery Glasser
Avery Glasser is the co-founder of Bittermens, a bitters company that expanded into craft syrups and spirits. In this role he has dealt with dangerous and/or controlled ingredients, as well as the relevant legal procedures and approvals to use them in products. He has been a leading voice in the cocktail safety movement over the last several years and will be serving as an expert consultant on CocktailSafe.
This website is informational only, with the goal of helping people make safer cocktails. We recommend common sense, responsible consumption of alcohol, and fact-checking.