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Kellie Thorn—a bartender for the last 13 years—joined forces with star chef Hugh Acheson in 2010 to open Empire State South, in Atlanta, GA, a vibrant reimagining of traditional southern fare. Her success there led to her becoming Beverage Director for all of Acheson’s restaurants in 2013. A BNIC Certified Cognac Educator, she recently passed the BAR Five Day program in New York and helps organize annual charity events for Wholesome Wave Georgia and Community Farmer’s Market. When not behind the bar, Kellie enjoys yoga, traveling, experimenting with cooking, and spending time with her son, Finnian.
Currently the Head of Beverage at Urban Cowboy Public House, Brice Hoffman is an acclaimed hospitality veteran with more than a decade behind the stick. He honed his craft at venues like the award-winning Bourbon and Branch in San Francisco, and continued to do so in Nashville as the Bar Emperor at Rolf and Daughters. His favorite approach is to play with classics while putting his own special touch on each menu to keep it current, interesting, and—most important—tasty. When not bartending, he loves to spend time with his babe of a wife, Leah, and their 2 monster cats and untrainable dog.
Brian McCullough— GQ Magazine ’s Bombay Sapphire's Most Inspired Bartender 2010 and Eater Dallas ’s Bartender of the Year 2013—opened The Standard Pour in Dallas, TX, in 2012. It has been named one of the Best Bars of the South by Southern Living Magazine, and Best Cocktail Bar in Dallas by Thrillist and CultureMap. He was president of North Texas US Bartenders Guild 2010–2015 and has been featured in Tasting Panel Magazine, Imbibe, Garden & Gun, Southern Living, Food & Wine, Travel Leisure, Conde Nast, Drinks International, and D Magazine. Brian, a US Army Veteran and proud father, runs the bar consulting company Liquid & Logic Consulting and recently opened Vicini American Italian Restaurant & Bar in Frisco, TX.