Cocktail Academy was founded in the LA Arts District in 2014 by a team of hospitality forward-thinkers who wanted to help shape cocktail culture for tomorrows consumer through engaging education and the most artistic, personalized, cocktail experiences imaginable. Cocktail Academy leverages extensive background in every sector of the food and beverage service industry to facilitate premier guest experiences, offering valuable insight into modern-day consumers’ cravings. Immersed in cocktail culture, Cocktail Academy has become a trusted ambassador for global brands, fostering authentic engagement through education and creative activation.
WHO STARTED IT
Born in New York City and raised in Los Angeles, Landes draws his inspiration from the city’s diverse neighborhoods and cultures, the bounty of locally harvested produce, and the convivial attitude of LA’s bar and food industry. Having previously developed programs and captained teams at The Montage Beverly Hills and 41 Ocean in addition to opened pop-up drinking den Apartment A, Landes is guided by executing exceedingly personalized and artistic cocktail experiences. Launching Cocktail Academy in 2015, Landes has applied those core tenants and elevated them beyond the confines of a singular space. Cocktail Academy personalizes the bar into its own form of entertainment, individually tailoring every component at private events, large-scale festivals, and media-facing engagements across the nation, no matter size or scope.“Cocktails are a great tool,” says Landes. “We can use them to introduce people to spirits or restaurants, but we can also use them to connect with brands and the world around us.”
CO-FOUNDER / MIXOLOGIST
Brandyn Tepper creates stories with the cocktails he crafts, from classics to modern interpretations and his passion transports drinkers with each sip. With roots in Los Angeles, Tepper’s foray into the world of food and beverage started with a deep respect for New York bartender Sam Ross and his reputation as one of the most influential bartenders of his era. Tepper led the program as Lead Bartender at David Myer’s restaurant, Hinoki & the Bird, where he worked alongside Ross and was recognized as one of Zagat’s “30 Under 30”.
Following his stint at Hinoki & the Bird, Tepper went on to craft the bar experiences at Simbal, SBE’s Doheny Room, The Pop-up at El Chavo, and Esquire Magazine ‘Best New Restaurant” Felix. His accomplishments have been featured in publications including bon appetit, Food &
Wine, LA Weekly, Los Angeles Confidential and more. In 2018, Tepper moved to San Francisco to become the Bar Director for the Three-Michilen starred and current World’s 50 Best restaurant Saison, and the two forthcoming restaurants they are slated to open in San Francisco and Los Angeles, Angler.
Both his peers and industry personnel alike recognize Brandyn as one of the next barmen destined to shape the cocktail world in years to come. Tepper’s dedication to classic cocktails, excellent execution and above all consistency have shaped the Cocktail Academy program today.
WHERE IT STARTED
Our “Cocktail Lab” events’ space and enchanted drinking den in Downtown’s Arts District. Open from 2014-2016, Apartment A was owned and operated by Cocktail Academy and acted as the creative think tank in which our passion for creating the most dynamic, elevated and personalized cocktail experiences possible grew. The multi-faceted space lived in a brick loft designed by renowned artist Matt Winter, with high ceilings, industrial mill belts, hanging greenery, vintage eclectic seating/lounges, reclaimed wood farm tables and most prominently was anchored by an ornate bar positioned in front of a living wall of ingredients and garnishes. Regular programming consisted of pop-up dinners, cocktail lessons, spirit tastings and most famously, the ultimate cocktail parties.