Meet the Mixologist That’s Turning Your Childhood Dreams Into Cocktails
BY: BILLY LYONS | FEATURED + LEAD GIF COURTESY OF MARINA ESMERALDO
As the saying goes, “the devil is in the details,” and when it comes to cocktail creation, Cody Goldstein lives by it. Cody is one of New York’s most in-demand cocktail consultants and mixologists, and his creations range from drinks served out of snow globes to recipes magical enough for a Disney princess to enjoy. This bartender is all about pushing the boundaries of the modern-day drinking experience.
We sat down with Cody, founder of Muddling Memories, to find out how he’s helping people reconnect with their childhood through a buzz-filled trip.
What’s Muddling Memories all about?
Muddling Memories is a company that creates cocktail experiences. We think outside of the box. We put the fun back in drinking. It’s really about creating a memory and sensory experience, what you remember going back to your childhood.
What does being an entrepreneur mean to you?
Being an entrepreneur is really having a business that you are truly passionate about, that you see being successful, and that you don’t mind grinding to get it to be there… After I left my corporate job about six or seven years ago, I’ve never felt like I’ve worked a day since, which is pretty amazing.
What do you think your cocktail movement is about?
My movement is really about connecting people back to the cocktails. In an age where there are people spending more time taking photos of their food than are actually eating it, I do think it’s important to create an experience.
Are there consistencies in your process when you’re creating your menu?
I don’t typically build a drink from an ingredient, I build it from a concept and experience. From there, I then try to figure out a way to execute it, make the cocktail cohesive in both the concept and the quality.
Are there any childhood memories you tend to use more often than others?
I play off of things I loved growing up. Things such as cartoons, toys, food, vacations, and even sleep-away camp are all very fond memories of mine… I have been leaning a lot towards the nostalgia of my youth in the early 90s. I have three drinks on menus right now that are based around Lisa Frank Trapper Keepers, Disney princesses, and the myth of Paul Bunyan.
Is it just coincidence that your drinks look so good on Instagram?
I think you’d be foolish to think that social media doesn’t play a part in some sort of marketing aspect for businesses now… I’d like to think that the cocktails I create are both visually interesting and also taste great as well, so I think you get the best of both worlds. You see it online, you see it on social media, you see it on Instagram, it makes you curious. You show up to the venue, you order the drink, and I do think they live up to the hype.
What are some of the weirdest requests you’ve gotten from brands or clients?
I once had a client ask me to make them a cocktail using Brie cheese. I hesitantly agreed and when it was finished, we both agreed it would never happen again.
Do you think your work is inspiring other mixologists and bartenders?
I like to do what I do. I get inspiration from other people that I see and I hope that what I do also inspires other people to want to think outside the box. Between garnishes and glassware, I think there are so many fun ways to really create a cocktail and make it something that is special…It’s always for me, the devil is in the details.