Mixologist Stephen Cole of The Violet Hour - Biography

Chicago, IL

February 2011

Stephen Cole’s story began in a small farming town in Missouri, where at a young age he set his sights on the culinary world. Early culinary influences came from his parents. His mother’s strong Sicilian roots and Southern Italian cooking led his palate and taught him technique, while his Dad’s annual wine and beer making events schooled the young Cole in Midwestern hospitality (which comes with a capital ‘H’).

Shortly after graduation from California Culinary Academy with a Culinary Arts Degree, Cole traveled from coast to coast working in restaurants, and made the trip to Barcelona to work at the Michelin-starred Drolma.

In 2007 the owners of the now-renowned The Violet Hour invited Cole to join the opening team as a bartender—to help lead the lounge, and Chicago, into the budding world of craft-cocktails. Cole Spent four years at Violet Hour, bringing his kitchen know-how to the bar, with a reverence for the classics.

Cole has recently left Violet Hour to fulfill his dream of opening his own bar and restaurant. Barrelhouse Flat is slated for Fall 2011. Focusing on classic cocktails, punches, and a seasonal savory menu, Cole hopes to continue to offer his guests his tried and true brand of hospitality, love of history, and top-notch culinary and cocktail-shaking skills.