Martin Cate is a rum and exotic cocktail expert and the owner and creator of Smuggler’s Cove in San Francisco. Smuggler’s Cove features the largest rum selection in the United States and features cocktails from over three centuries of rum history. The Sunday Times of London has named Smuggler’s Cove one of the 50 Greatest Bars on Earth. In a global industry survey for Drinks International Magazine, Smuggler’s Cove has been named one of the Top 50 Bars in the World for six consecutive years. Smuggler's Cove was just named Best American Cocktail Bar 2016 at the 10th Annual Tales of the Cocktail Spirited Awards, one of the Top Ten Food & Beverage concepts of the last 25 years by Cheers Magazine, and one of the 13 Most Influential Bars of the 21st Century by Liquor.com. Smuggler’s Cove was named one of America’s Best Bars by Esquire Magazine in 2013 and by Playboy Magazine in 2012, and was named to Esquire’s Best Bars Hall of Fame in 2016. Martin is a passionate rum collector and conducts educational seminars and officiates rum & cocktail competitions across the United States, Europe and the Caribbean. In 2015, along with partners Alex Smith & John Park, Martin opened Whitechapel in San Francisco to bring the same passion for history and craft to the world of gin. He is also the co-owner of Hale Pele in Portland, False Idol in San Diego, and a partner in Lost Lake in Chicago. In June of 2016, Martin’s book “Smuggler’s Cove: Exotic Cocktails, Rum, and the Cult of Tiki” was published by Ten Speed Press.
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With over a decade of experience operating rum bars, Martin is an expert on the rum market and the rum consumer. He has consulted on several rum brands over the years, and is available for consulting on new rum products, including everything from developing and refining the rum’s flavor profile, to market positioning, to packaging and labeling, to advertising and POS. Martin is also available to consult on opening and operating a tiki bar, having extensive experience helping fellow bar owners with everything from interior design to menu development to day-to-day operations.
Martin loves sharing his passion for rum and tiki and has been giving entertaining and informative talks and trainings to audiences of 20 to over 300 for over a decade, including seminars at Tales of the Cocktail, Tiki Oasis, Arizona Cocktail Week, Golden State of Cocktails, and Sacramento Cocktail Week. He is available to provide trainings, tastings, workshops, teambuilding courses, or group classes on rum, tiki, or a combination thereof, and can tailor these presentations to both industry professionals and non-industry enthusiasts.