It now seems inevitable that one day all of our food and beverage needs will be delivered in pod form. The Keurig showed us how easy it was to make brown caffeinated water from beans, and now Black+Decker’s Bev will do the same thing for cocktails, mixing ingredient-filled capsules with five different liquors for those wanting the home bar experience without doing any work.
Mixing cocktails isn’t a particularly demanding task, but it does require enough patience to use a measuring device like a jigger, or enough composure to accurately pour ingredients. By the end of the night most of us are lacking both, so the Bev promises to do all of the hard work on your behalf, and without the risk of spills when someone feels inspired to try their hand at flair bartending.
Instead of ground coffee in pods, the Bev uses Bartesian’s cocktail capsules (sold separately), which contain the ingredients for more than 40 different cocktails, as well as a barcode on top of each pod that the Bev scans to know the types and amounts of liquor to dispense.
The Bev has a container for water like most instant coffee machines do, but also includes spots for five liquor bottles: gin, rum, tequila, vodka, and whiskey. Users can install whatever brand of liquor they prefer, because the Bev uses long metal straws to draw the product out of each bottle, although there does appear to be a limit to how tall or wide each bottle can be. Black+Decker lists the compatibility as being for “five standard 750ml bottles,” which means most popular brands will work.
Users will be able to keep an eye on how full each bottle is as they use the Bev, but the machine will also automatically detect when a specific liquor has run out, or when there’s not enough to mix a cocktail at a selected strength, and will alert the user before attempting to make the drink. The machine also features LED accent lighting to illuminate each bottle, and an optional party mode that will illuminate each bottle in sequence for an added layer of fun.
The Bev is undoubtedly a lot cheaper than paying a professional bartender to mix drinks for you at home (and $US150 ($207) cheaper than Bartesian’s own automated cocktail maker) but it’s obviously not cheaper than mixing your own. The Bartesian capsules run just over $US3 ($4) each (or slightly cheaper if you buy them in packs of 32 instead of just eight) and the Bev itself will sell for $US300 ($414) when available sometime in the spring — plus the cost of liquor. If that sounds like a steal, well, you must really hate to measure.