Sumptuous Spirits owner Lauren Daniels shares how she came up with the idea for an upscale bartending service and the notable person in fashion that she would like to create a cocktail for.
By Rachel Schostak
Photography by Viviana Pernot
1. Tell us about yourself and background: I’m the owner of Sumptuous Spirits, a full-service bartending company that curates upscale bar experiences in Michigan and Illinois. Since launching in 2016, Sumptuous Spirits has grown to a team of 20-plus staff members, curating bar experiences for Google, Ford, WeWork, Alex and Ani, The Lip Bar, American Heart Association, Moosejaw and more. I’m a proud HBCU graduate and member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. I enjoy spending time with my husband and son, Darren (born April 10), watching reality TV, traveling and reading.
2. How did you come up with the idea for Sumptuous Spirits? Sumptuous Spirits happened as a result of seeing the need for professional, upscale bartending service. As a self-proclaimed cocktail connoisseur, friends would always ask me to make drinks. I saw there was a need, especially in an emerging city like Detroit where there are business launches and private celebrations in need of bartenders. I attended bartending school in January 2016 and launched Sumptuous Spirits in April 2016.
3. What do you enjoy most about your job? I enjoy the community connection. Since starting my business, I’ve had the opportunity to meet other entrepreneurs. I’m continuously inspired by their stories. I’ve met amazing people who become collaboration partners and friends. I also love to see how our bar experience really transforms an event. Instead of just the typical bar service, our team truly puts in the work to make the bar service memorable. When you hear people talk about the quality of the service and drinks, it makes me happy.
4. Your go-to drink? My go to drink is one I created called a Peachy Keen with whiskey, peach schnapps and white peach juice. It’s the perfect drink for any occasion, especially happy hour!
5. Where do you find your inspiration for a drink? I always draw inspiration from the client. When I’m creating a menu, it’s more than just finding out what they typically drink. It’s about the event and their personality, ensuring the menu is a reflection of the host.
6. What’s your favorite summer drink? A summer favorite is a drink we created for The Lip Bar called Bawse Lady, which is vodka, strawberry liqueur, pineapple juice, grenadine, topped with tonic and a pink sugar rim. It’s the perfect summer cocktail!
7. Who inspires you in hospitality or business world? I’m inspired by Daymond John, Karen Civil, Whitney Wolfe Herd and Sara Blakely. I love learning the stories of successful entrepreneurs who are innovative, build from the ground up and overcome adversity. I’m also inspired by my mentors Joni Davis and Anistia Thomas. They are both amazing women who have made a huge impact in the city of Detroit and beyond.
8. Who is one person you would like to make a drink for? I would love to create a drink for (rapper) Diddy. He is one that enjoys a great drink; I know he would appreciate the Sumptuous experience.
Your Local Love List…
9. What do you love most about our community? I love Detroit’s entrepreneurial spirit and support that the community provides.
10. Your go-to for a good drink (of course, if you are not making it)? The Sugar House. So many amazing cocktails!
12. When not working where can we find you? At home with my newborn son Darren and husband Cantrell.
Now on to your style…
14. Three words to describe your style? Classy, simple, chic.
15. One item you can’t leave home without? My Michael Kors rose gold smartwatch.
16. You’re never fully dressed without…? A pair of earrings.
17. On a perfect summer afternoon what are you wearing? A cute sundress, statement heels and oversized shades.
18. If you were to create a cocktail for a notable person in fashion, what would it be? If I were to create a cocktail for a notable person, it would be Sarah Jessica Parker. I would create a cosmo with a twist.
19. Your current must-have item? Bold statement blouses.
20. Your most cherished item in your closet? My all black Iriza Christian Louboutin heels. I wore them the day I received my MBA from Wayne State.
22. Favorite quote or words to live by? “Commit the Lord whatever you do and he will establish your plans.” Proverbs 16:3