Classy Camper Cocktail Co. Brings Panache To A Party
The crowds have been large at each of the four exhibit openings/anniversary celebrations at The School | Jack Shainman Gallery in Kinderhook, New York. Besides the throng of art lovers snaking their way through the gallery’s three floors, the lines have been long in another area of the sprawling event.
Out in the parking lot, the Classy Camper Cocktail Company, based out of Stuyvesant, New York, has been a popular presence at the last two School openings. And with good reason. Classy Camper owner Morgan Herchenroder offers up signature cocktails with fresh ingredients, including simple syrups that she makes herself. (See below for the Spring Fling Cocktail made with lavender syrup served on May 20 at The School.)
Herchenroder is now in her second year traveling with her trusty 1960 Shasta camper, named Lola, having “opened shop” in May of 2017. “It’s something I’ve wanted to do for two years, but finding the camper and renovating it took a lot of time,” says Herchenroder, who is assisted at some events by her sister or her childhood best friend.
“I’ve always been in the restaurant business,” says Herchenroder, whom you may have seen at Hudson’s Wm. Farmer & Sons, where she works as a server a couple of nights a week. “I knew I wanted to do something on my own, like a food truck, but I’m not a great chef,” she laughs. “But I’ve always been a bartender.”
She had been hearing a lot about decorated “caravans,” which are popular in Australia and overseas. “I thought that would be a good fit for the destination and barn weddings that are so popular in this area,” she says. “It brings something extra special to an event, be it a wedding, an anniversary party, really anything. This year I got hired for a ‘mom camp’ in Lake George.” Speaking of moms, Herchenroder says her traveling cocktail business is great because it gives her the flexibility she needs while she’s raising her kids.
Because of New York State liquor laws, Classy Camper Cocktail Co. can provide everything except the alcohol. This does, however, give the client the freedom to buy whatever kinds of alcohol they desire from wherever they want, without an upcharge. They buy the alcohol, Herchenroder takes care of the rest, including the delivery. She offers basic packages (beer and wine) as well as full-service packages that include mixers, ice, garnishes and glass- or plastic-ware, and non-boozy drinks such as iced tea or lemonade. She also brings along yard games, such as cornhole, bocce and a very large jenga.
Herchenroder, who grew up in Kinderhook, will be back for the town’s upcoming food truck nights on Thursdays, June 28 and Aug. 23. She’ll be partnering up with The Flammerie to serve beer, wine and wine cocktails. You should stop by; we’ve got a feeling it’s going to be very classy.
Spring Fling Cocktail
1 oz. vodka
1/2 oz. lavender simple syrup
2 oz. lemonade
Splash of sparkling water
1. Mix vodka, lavender simple syrup and lemonade.
2. Top with sparkling water and serve over ice.
3. Garnish with a lilac blossom.
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