Sometimes you meet a person and immediately know they have a good heart … that’s Rael Petit. His honesty and passion for his craft just oozes out of him. Starting out as a young gun in the industry, Rael has earned his reputation for being super creative and playing with ingredients like foie gras just for fun. You’ve probably seen him shaking or stirring at his spot, Mulberry Project, or behind the stick at the swanky Tribeca Grand Hotel. And although we really like his incredible & inventive drinks, most we just really like him, so ladies & gents, let’s go drinking with … Rael Petit.
Favorite NYC place to hang out when meeting someone for a “drink” …. where can we find you drinking when not working?
I frequently hang out at Extra Fancy in Williamsburg, it’s a great spot with fun cocktails and people.
Favorite place to take an out of towner?
The rooftop of the Wythe Hotel, it has the best views of the city. It’s so much easier to explain where things are to a tourist when you can actually visualize the different neighborhoods by buildings.
Favorite go-to drink order?
Since I’m gluten free, it’s usually a cider.
First job in the industry?
The Coffee Shop in Union Square when I was just 19 and it was part of my hotel school program. I basically worked every single position while I was there. When I worked the bar, people would just ask me, “can you make something up for me?” … so that’s how it all started.
First alcoholic drink you ever had? What were you drinking the first time you got drunky?
My first alcoholic beverage was a Cosmo … yes a Cosmo! My cousins were taking me to clubs at the age of 13. They kept on buying me Cosmos and since I was a kid I didn’t know better. Plus they are so sweet that they went down easy and, while, I got wasted.
What ingredient(s) or spirits are you most excited about right now with the warm weather coming up?
I can’t wait to grow some Rosemary again. I have a backyard and grow a lot of different herbs that I use to infuse in spirits like Singani 63, Ilegal Mezcal or Solbeso.
Coffee or tea?
I start the day with an espresso and then I switch to mint tea all day.
What’s your hangover remedy?
Kale ginger apple juice with a burn thyme
What cocktail trend are you feeling for spring / summer?
I love making cocktails with watermelon, especially when the temperature feels like100 degrees.
Favorite industry people?
My Favorite barista is Sarah Fallon, she just makes fun of my latte foam technique all day.
Favorite mixologist is Jeremy Strawn, he’s my business partner at Mulberry Project. I have to mention him otherwise he will hit me in the private parts.
Best spots to eat when you are drinking, or let’s be honest, drunk?
Diner in Williamsburg is still one of my favorite restaurant in NY, plus there wine list is pretty good. And I love the fact that the place is crooked.
Where is your fave spot for a super chill night out or a date night recommendation?
I love going to Hotel Delmano it’s such a chill sexy spot.
Hidden or underrated NYC gems?
Lucky Dog is a pretty awesome dive, and I can bring my puppy there since they are pet friendly.
What are you most proud of in your career thus far?
I don’t think I’ve reached that point of achieving something that I’m most proud yet, I will say that I am proud of my street canvas cocktails.
Whom can we thank (besides yourself) for your delicious work?
Vincent Boitier from l Orange Bleue and the Broome Hotel. He always pushed me to be creative and he taught me a whole lot about wine.
Straight update: what are you working on these days? Let’s hear it.
I m working full time at the Tribeca Grand Hotel and I’m currently doing the beverage program for Lot 45 in Bushwick.
If you weren’t part of the crazy booze biz, what would you be doing?
I always wanted to be Indiana Jones, so I would’ve been a archeologist.
Rumor has it that you are a serious athlete … what sports do you play and how do you maintain with your boozy bar life?
Haha yeah, I’m an outdoor man. I practice multiple sports, like tennis, rock climbing. But I competitively run marathons and Ironman. I make sure I always practice one of those sports everyday. Instead of going to bars after work I run home or ski when we have those fun snowstorms.
How can we follow your Thirsty adventures?
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