We are delighted to present this guest post from Geri Lefebre, co-owner of Ethanology – an artisan distillery in the harbor town of Elk Rapids, Michigan.

“Can you imagine drinking wine or beer with a straw? Strange right? So, why do we insist on it with cocktails?”

I am afraid for our water. There, I’ve said it. My special snowflake spidey senses are in full tingle-mode about this one; I am absolutely terrified for the future of water. There are a lot of horrible issues in the world right now, but water effects all

Cocktail from Ethanology.

Stunning cocktail. No plastic required.

of us, down to our core. WE are made of water (60% in fact). WE cannot live without it (only about 3 days in fact). WE are polluting and risking the amazing gift we have (while nearly 1 billion don’t have access to clean water). Wtf… and this doesn’t even count salt water, which the almighty google tells me 3.5 billion people depend on for their food.

This shit keeps me up at night. I operate a manufacturing and hospitality facility, two industries that are traditionally heinous offenders when it comes to waste and pollution. We are small and pride ourselves on efficiency, but still… we can do so much better, and it really needs to start today, yesterday preferably.

The Bloody Mary Bar of Ethanology

Sunday, Bloody Sunday. Plastic-free style!

One way we are trying to help is by actively participating in straw-shaming. Just kidding, sort of. We don’t offer straws with drinks anymore, plain and simple (and yes we are looking into alternatives).  They aren’t necessary folks, and actually, for most purposes it’s a little weird. I mean, can you imagine drinking wine or beer with a straw? Strange right? So, why do we insist on it with cocktails? It’s not necessary and if you want to impress your friends you can educate them on why drinking cocktails at the interface (where air and liquid meet) is the preferred style if you want to maximize flavor and aroma enjoyment.

The beautiful ingredients of a master mixologist.

I know that this might fuck up your lipstick, or whatever, but it is straight up fact that most people do not need straws to consume their cocktails (and the micro percentage that do are easily accommodated). We are all responsible for ruining the planet with plastic, in the US and UK alone we throw away 550 million straws. Every. Damn. Day. Try to picture that. And that’s just plastic from straws. All this plastic is killing the ocean, and news flash… we need the ocean to live. This is now not simply about killing sea turtles (which should be enough), this is self-preservation people, time to wake up. Commit to doing a little better every day, make better choices, and hold each other accountable.

Ps.  We have a back-stock of straws that just throwing away seems really really unhelpful.  Can someone please think of something creative/ helpful to do with these. Perhaps someone can make something beautiful from them? Anyone want to buy them off us with 100% of proceeds going to Plastic Oceans International?


Ethanology is an Artisan Distillery and Spirit House Located in the Harbor Town of Elk Rapids Michigan. Ethanology Synthesizes Ultra Premium Vodka, Gin, Whiskey, Brandy, Rum and other Unique Spirits, Sourced From Local Farms.​

They will hosting Plastic Oceans and For Love of Water (FLOW) on February 2, 2019. Details HERE.