LINCOLN PARK — Twin brothers Parker and Adam Newman have observed the craft beer surge over the last few years and are betting liquor soon will follow.
The 29-year-olds launched their national online craft liquor retailer Ezra's Thursday morning after the opening of their brick-and-mortar headquarters at 1128 W. Armitage Ave.
Ezra's storefront serves as a physical realization of their website, a marketplace and educational center for all things craft liquor.
“We saw, sort of, what happened with the craft beer boom and predicted that was what was going to happen with craft spirits, so that is sort of where the idea came about," said Adam Newman.
The brothers, who live in Old Town, wanted to create a marketplace for customers who might or might not be familiar with smaller distilleries.
In the store, the brothers and Ezra's employees will serve as guides for customers who are interested in craft liquor.
"Our main problem was you come to these liquor stores, and it’s just shelves," Parker Newman said. "I don’t want people judging a product on how cool the bottle is. Liquid is liquid, so we wanted to create an educational tool that talks about the stories.”
The shop sells not only liquor, but ingredients for unique drinks as well as beer and wine.
Online, the website will feature editorial content about the company's offerings as well as recipes and tips. The online site is liquor only.
The Newmans want to give customers a peek behind the scenes at people who are creating the liquor.
Ezra's website will be updated twice a month with editorial content, including distiller interviews and tours, bar views, videos and articles.
Recently, Ezra's sent a crew to California to interview the head of a distillery.
At launch, the company will offer more that 125 craft liquors.
"The whole store is craft everything," Adam Newman said. "You won't find any Jack Daniels here. No Grey Goose. It's all local, small-batch and craft spirits."
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