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The present day: analysis of creative evolution

A particularly important aim of the Sapiens methodology is the study of creation and innovation within organisations, and their evolution over time. Through in-depth interviews, inspired by journalism and ethnography, we have carried out an analysis of the case studies of three businesses that each incorporated significant innovations which had consequences for the future development of cocktails as a discipline.

Firstly, we review a hitherto unpublished account of the significance that cocktails played in the story of elBulli. It is not generally appreciated how this fitted into the general concept of the tasting menu, obeying an internal logic of production and service, or how it served as a testbed for various technical advances that would later be used in other elaborations (the whipping siphon, for example). In addition, this section also reviews the subsequent development of cocktails in 410 and Enigma, and the work carried out by Marc Álvarez and Albert Adrià.

The second case study examines the Dry Martini business model devised by Javier de las Muelas, and in particular his desire to standardise and systematise all areas of the company, with a disposition towards growth and development that differentiates him from the SME model that governs many business structures in the world of cocktails.

Finally, we apply the analysis to the innovations made at The Artesian, during the successful period in which it was directed by Alex Kratena and Simone Caporale. We examine the changes made in the structure of the menu, the mechanisms employed to generate ideas, the industrial design utilised and study its relationships with suppliers.

This chapter aims to illustrate three cases of creative disruption in the context of cocktail bars. In addition to offering ideas for aspiring entrepreneurs, it serves as a link to the second volume of this project, which focuses on the management of a cocktail bar.