Session Film: Raising the Bar in Spirits Strategy is the latest foodservice event made by industry leaders for industry leaders. Executives, master chefs, restaurateurs, mixologists, and filmmakers gather for a day of Food Theory: collaboration, education, and entertainment. Attendees participated in interactive panel sessions, where custom films preceded an expert-panel Q&A. Missed out? Never fear! Enjoy this featured panel film below and get ready for 2017.

More than drinks, today's mixologists are shaking and stirring things up in the industry and raising the bar when it comes to reinventing cocktails. What are the latest ideas giving consumers a refreshing perspective on their favorite sips? The bar is one of the most profitable centers of a restaurant, and if done right, leaves a culinary experience like none other. Done wrong, it is the potential contributor to a failed operation.

According to Foodable Labs, the Top 100 Spirit Brands have an average sentiment rating of 82.9 out of 100, compared to the Top 100 Craft Beer Brands with an average sentiment of 71.2, followed by the Top 100 Wine Brands with an average sentiment rating of 68.4. Needless to say, consumers like their spirits.

Of the demographic leading spirits consumption, the Millennial generation leads the pack. What does this mean for promising bar and spirits operators? The bar business must continue to innovate to attract this highly creative, nonconforming group.

"[We're] Always kind of thinking about how you eat and how you drink as more than just eating and drinking, so we like to add other elements. We like to add touch or sound or sight. Things that are just beyond the experience of drinking a cocktail. Looking at ingredients like you would at a traditional bar or restaurant, but always looking for new ways to present things. ...It's more of an experience, more of a theater, if you will," Micah Melton, beverage director at The Aviary, said. 

Demand is pushing the limit. Soon, innovators in the bar scene will make beverages as enticing and alluring as the dishes prepared by master chefs. While consumers may have their habitual drinks, the new-age consumer is more open to exploring unconventional creations, such as an alcoholic cocktail that also consists of chopstick-needed noodles. The bar of the future may very well be the cornerstone of tomorrow's foodservice establishments.