Collaborations are a thing here in Detroit, and Two James, the first distillery since prohibition in Detroit, is teaming up with the Wolfgang Puck Steak restaurant in the MGM Grand Detroit for a whiskey only available at that restaurant.
The MGM Grand is a big destination in our area, and by far is the top casino in the city (at least by revenue), at nearly $13 million in revenue ahead of its next largest competitor in Detroit, Motor City Casino for the month of May, 2016.
The new make of rye whiskey created by Two James Spirits is poured right out of the barrel from a tableside cart created by Taru Lahti, a Detroit-based designer.
Lahti says he used local materials, including maple and steel, to display the five aging barrels.
“The cart was a collaboration with Two James Spirits and MGM Grand Detroit. The design had to convey handmade artisan elegance, but keep true to a structure that would support the weight of the oak barrels. With these fundamental ideals established we needed to add a final element that would make the cart stand alone. The idea was simple; incorporate a smaller cart for exclusive table side service. The smaller cart would integrate with the larger cart in such a way that when the two are together they become a focal point in Wolfgang Puck Steak. The final design has exceeded the initial concept goal and defines a true partnership between local businesses,” said Lahti.
The clear, or “white,” whiskey distilled just over a mile away from Wolfgang Puck Steak at Two James Spirits in Corktown and is made with locally grown grain and mash.
The result is a spirit with a “unique profile and fig finish” that was developed after selecting specific aging barrels.
“Two James Spirits is excited to partner with our friends and neighbors at MGM Grand Detroit for this unique whiskey program using our rye distillate produced on-site in our copper pot still from the finest Michigan rye grain,” said David Landrum, founder at Two James Spirits in a statement. “We have been fortunate to create friendships with local farms throughout the state, such as Wing Farms, which has allowed us to select the perfect species of rye in order to create a spirit that truly is The Spirit of Detroit.”
Wolfgang Puck Steak is open at 5 p.m. seven days a week. They recommend reservations, but walk-ins are welcome.