Mixologist Toby Maloney of The Violet Hour - Biography

Chicago, IL

September 2015

Toby Maloney began his career with more basic training than razzle dazzle. The future bartender, beverage guru, and trend setter spent some time in culinary school in San Francisco, where he began collecting the skills and techniques he would later bring to bear during New York City’s cocktail revival. But it’s not just schooling that makes Maloney such an invaluable player in the cocktail game.

Over the course of his career, Maloney has traveled the world, seeking out the most visceral of epicurean experiences. His wanderings have led him from the beaches of Thailand, where he concocted Sang Thip cocktails, to the boisterous traditions of Oktoberfest, where Maloney pulled beers for a rosy-cheeked and happy crowd. He was a founder of Chicago’s original cocktail den, the Violet Hour, and helped launched The Park Hyatt Tokyo’s New York Bar before opening The Patterson House in Nashville and Pouring Ribbons in New York City.

He was one of the founders of taste makers Alchemy Consulting in 2004, and has since moved on from the firm. While Alchemy’s purview was strictly cocktailian—most of their work goes into creating award-winning cocktail recipes—Maloney, was the company’s “philosophical guide,” bringing to the table every lesson learned from a life in the industry, from doorman and dishwasher to busboy, waiter, cook, and bar back. In 2014, he was nominated for James Beard’s “Outstanding Bar Program” at the Violet Hour, finally taking the medal home in 2015.