Catherine Bell and Mark Bryan help celebrate the launch of American Harvest 

A Spirited Affair

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American Harvest hosted their local launch party upstairs at McCrady’s on Thursday night. We were greeted at the top of the stairs by girls dressed in midnight blue cocktail dresses emblazoned with the liquor brand’s logo, holding trays of mini, melon-y cocktails — always a good way to begin the night.

Once we reached the bar and saw the long line, however, I wish I’d grabbed three or four of the little drinks. Bartenders were offering a selection of four specialty cocktails that they were still obviously learning how to make. They proved to be worth the wait, though — my favorite was the Local Harvest, a blend of American Harvest, basil, limes, cucumber, and agave nectar. Another popular choice seemed to be the Very Berry Harvest, a mix of the vodka with mint, blackberries and raspberries, and agave nectar topped with ginger beer. The vodka has a subtle, smooth, almost nonexistent flavor — just like good vodka should.

Eventually, guests were herded into the next room, where company bigwigs spoke about the growth of the brand. The vodka is made from organic winter wheat grown on an American farm, then distilled and bottled in Idaho. The company puts a strong emphasis on maintaining green practices, so it seemed a perfect fit when they awarded City Paper’s Suzie Webster with a check to help with the Green Fair.

After the presentations, most guests either skedaddled for more drinks or made a beeline for the food — a carving station was set up on one side of the room, iced shrimp and crab on the other. The Occasional Milkshake played some rootsy standards but most people kept off the dance floor — except for guest of honor Catherine Bell. The Army Wives star danced to one song with her husband before schmoozing it up with adoring fans.

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