Bars Use Tech to Solve Issues of Dead Cell Phones, Flat Beer and Ice That Isn’t Boozy

Plus: A simple solution to the gift card for your F&B-savvy people

In nearly all aspects of our lives today, advances in technology are constantly providing new ways to make our lives easier and more enjoyable. Such is the case with these new and innovative products finding their way into the bar industry.

Beyond Zero Machine

Do you like your spirits served cold but not watered down by melting ice? There isn’t an app for that (yet …), but there is a new device that can freeze the heretofore unfreezable spirit of your choice. Beyond Zero is a countertop machine that actually freezes any type of alcohol into various ice-cube-sized shapes, and it has the potential to be a landmark breakthrough in the beverage industry. Inventor Jason Sherman, a devoted scotch/whiskey drinker, initially designed a machine 20 years ago that made ice cream using liquid nitrogen. Sherman says, “One night, I experimented with pouring tequila into my machine and it was a mind-blowing experience, as it tasted so smooth, with no dilution and without the alcohol burn you get when drinking a spirit straight. When ordering a drink, you can now ask for it ‘in the rocks’ instead of ‘on the rocks.’” Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits will have the exclusive right to sell the device in Nevada, and you should expect to see it soon at several of the distributor’s top accounts.


Any beer connoisseur worth his or her suds has likely purchased a growler—a container, usually made of glass, holding a half-gallon of beer that can be filled at one’s favorite brewpub or beer filling station to enjoy at home. Growlers of beer will stay fresh for up to 10 days if left sealed, but once opened, the draft beer will lose carbonation and be flat within a few days. The uKeg by GrowlerWerks functions like a very small keg and is a vacuum-insulated stainless steel growler carbonation system with a pressure-regulation cap that holds a small CO2 cartridge. It can keep beer under pressure and carbonated for two weeks or more, and pouring is made easier with a spout that works just as a draft handle would. There is a sight glass to indicate how much beer is left in the uKeg and a pressure gauge to guide your cap setting. State laws and retail preferences do factor in, and some states, such as California, require that the vessel’s logo match what is being poured into it. Fortunately, Nevada law permits fills into any container, but it is still up to the discretion of the beer bar whether or not they will fill a container not supplied by them. Prices start at $149 for the 64-ounce and $199 for the gallon size.


It seems a major catastrophe these days is having your phone die when you don’t have access to your charger or can’t find an electrical outlet. To the rescue is UNiCHARGE by Yatra, a universal portable charging station equipped with eight power banks that is popping up in restaurants, lounges and coffee shops (including STK in The Cosmopolitan), allowing patrons to recharge in 30 minutes or less and stay connected. Each station can be branded with the company’s logo, and is capable of charging multiple devices at once.


If you’ve ever wanted to give someone a gift card but didn’t want the hassle of picking it up and delivering it, one solution is the ItsOnMe e-gift, with which you can electronically purchase and send via email or text message either a monetary amount or a specific menu item. There are currently more than 60 Las Vegas venues to choose from, including Bandito, Carson Kitchen, Commonwealth, CraftHaus Brewery, Echo & Rig, Frankie’s Tiki Room, Herbs & Rye, The Laundry Room, Sparrow + Wolf and Velveteen Rabbit. You can also give gifts in the recipient’s neighborhood, as the service is available in multiple markets. To give or receive you will need to sign up for an account. It’s also possible to regift without anyone being the wiser.