back to top
Food

We Tried The New "Keurig For Cocktails" And This Is What Happened

Robot bartending has ARRIVED.

Posted on

Can a machine replace this? One company thinks yes.

The folks from the Ontario-based company Bartesian dropped by BuzzFeed SF to show us their "Keurig for cocktails."

Tiffany Kim / BuzzFeed

The Bartesian ($300 on Kickstarter) will launch Spring 2016, if funded, with six different cocktail capsules. We tried "Signature 1," a peach-y gin drink, and Sex on the Beach.

Tiffany Kim / BuzzFeed

First, you fill the reservoirs with your own basic spirits (gin, vodka, rum, and tequila).

Tiffany Kim / BuzzFeed

Then, you load the capsule, which contains ingredients like fruit juice, non-alcoholic liqueurs, muddled herbs, and bitters.

Nicole Nguyen / BuzzFeed

One neat thing about the capsules is that, unlike Keurig K-cups, the Bartesian pods are recyclable.

Tiffany Kim / BuzzFeed

Next, the machine draws alcohol from the appropriate reservoir and mixes it with the capsule liquids to create your cocktail.

Nicole Nguyen / BuzzFeed

In less than a minute, your drank is done. Each capsule has a barcode that the Bartesian needs to scan before you load it. This barcode tells the Bartesian what drink it's making so it uses the correct alcohol ratios.

The idea is that, with this machine, you don't have to stock up your pantry with random ingredients (like bitters and fruit juice) – just booze.

Tiffany Kim / BuzzFeed

I thought the "Signature 1" peach-y gin drink was sweet and palatable – not great, but not disgusting.

Tiffany Kim / BuzzFeed

But a tasting panel of one isn't a good idea, so I invited my colleagues to try the cocktails.

Nicole Nguyen / BuzzFeed

Here's how the peach-y gin drink, the Signature 1, fared:

Every Bartesian comes with a cocktail shaker. The machine doesn't chill the drink for you.
Tiffany Kim / BuzzFeed

Every Bartesian comes with a cocktail shaker. The machine doesn't chill the drink for you.

"Tastes like chemicals. Not good." – Brendan K.

"Strong processed flavor. It needs something else . . . Are cocktails really that hard to make?" – Jess M.

"I don't taste peach whatsoever." — Mathew G.

The Sex on the Beach tasted better.

Nicole Nguyen / BuzzFeed

"Tastes more like a real cocktail, but still too Kool Aid-y." – Jess M.

"Way too sweet, but at least I taste what seems like coconut." – Mathew G.

"Very OK." – Brendan K.

"No, these are not drinks I'd serve my friends." — Brendan K.

Here's the thing: it's really, really hard to make something out of a pod taste good.

There's a reason why craft cocktails take forever to make. They require a combination of fresh ingredients, quality spirits, and very attentive measuring, stirring, shaking, straining, and muddling. So, is this $300 "Keurig for Cocktails" worth it? That depends. If you're a gadget geek who loves tech gizmos for the novelty, then yes. If you're in a hurry, lazy, or looking to get drunk vs. drink a quality cocktail, then yes.But if you want to make a well-balanced, delicious cocktail at home, then no, the Bartesian is not the answer. You're better off getting a great cocktail book and buying the necessary tools and ingredients.We wished the Bartesian was the "ultimate cocktail machine." Keeping a home bar stocked can be a hassle. There are all the mixers and garnishes — not to mention tools like muddlers, strainers, jiggers, and the like. Plus, you have to take the time to measure all of the liquids and get the ratios right. When you get home from work or school and want a drink, the last thing you want is more dishes to wash, more things to prepare. And when your friends be like:
Tiffany Kim / BuzzFeed

There's a reason why craft cocktails take forever to make. They require a combination of fresh ingredients, quality spirits, and very attentive measuring, stirring, shaking, straining, and muddling.

So, is this $300 "Keurig for Cocktails" worth it? That depends.

If you're a gadget geek who loves tech gizmos for the novelty, then yes. If you're in a hurry, lazy, or looking to get drunk vs. drink a quality cocktail, then yes.

But if you want to make a well-balanced, delicious cocktail at home, then no, the Bartesian is not the answer. You're better off getting a great cocktail book and buying the necessary tools and ingredients.

We wished the Bartesian was the "ultimate cocktail machine." Keeping a home bar stocked can be a hassle. There are all the mixers and garnishes — not to mention tools like muddlers, strainers, jiggers, and the like. Plus, you have to take the time to measure all of the liquids and get the ratios right. When you get home from work or school and want a drink, the last thing you want is more dishes to wash, more things to prepare.

And when your friends be like:

realitytvgifs.tumblr.com

. . . the ability to make cocktails on demand is a *very* convenient thing.

The Bartesian isn't the only robot mixologist vying for your counterspace.

There's the slightly more expensive Somabar ($429), expected for December 2015 delivery, which might be more promising. It doesn't rely on capsules but rather removeable pods which you refill with the mixers, bitters, and alcohol of your choosing. You control the ingredients and the Somabar chills and mixes the drink on your behalf.
somabarkickstarter.com

There's the slightly more expensive Somabar ($429), expected for December 2015 delivery, which might be more promising. It doesn't rely on capsules but rather removeable pods which you refill with the mixers, bitters, and alcohol of your choosing. You control the ingredients and the Somabar chills and mixes the drink on your behalf.

Then there's the Jevo (price TBD), which produces 20 chilled jello shots in 10 minutes. But it's designed for commercial applications in bars and restaurants, so none for you, Gretchen Weiner.
jevomaker.com

Then there's the Jevo (price TBD), which produces 20 chilled jello shots in 10 minutes. But it's designed for commercial applications in bars and restaurants, so none for you, Gretchen Weiner.

Last but not least is the astounding $4,000 Monsieur, which has a ten-inch LCD touchscreen that displays the variety of cocktails it can make with eight different ingredients. Six ingredients can be placed in the cold compartment, and two can be placed in the room temperature compartment.
monsieur.co

Last but not least is the astounding $4,000 Monsieur, which has a ten-inch LCD touchscreen that displays the variety of cocktails it can make with eight different ingredients. Six ingredients can be placed in the cold compartment, and two can be placed in the room temperature compartment.

Robot bartenders are convenient — but, in their current iteration, they're far from the replacement bartenders they claim to be.

imgur.com / Via Touchstone Pictures

We'll stick to our s l o w l y crafted cocktails for now.

Top trending videos

Watch more BuzzFeed Video Caret right

Top trending videos

Watch more BuzzFeed Video Caret right
The best things at three price points