Formerly Vice Roy, Rob Roy was reintroduced to the Seattle night scene in 2009 and quickly became known as one of Seattle’s premier martini bars. Rob Roy specializes in providing classic high quality cocktails ranging from vesper martini’s to old fashions to aquavit fizz’s. They pride themselves on knowing their customers and mastering the art of making exquisite cocktails.
This is not a restaurant (Yes, they do serve some food). There are no espresso machines. There’s no beer on tap. There are no televisions. No jukebox. And if you order Jaeger Bombs, not only do you risk offending the establishment, but the customer base as well.
Just who are these customers, anyway? A typical customer of Rob Roy will be his early 30’s. He just got off of work from Amazon, went home to walk his dog, and then walked the mere 3 blocks to meet up with his buddies (from Boeing, Microsoft, and some other tech startup I can’t recall) for their weekly Thursday night happy hour. Young (although not the 21 and up crowd – typically 30’s/40’s) and professional (not rich, but with disposable income and discernable taste).
On a broader sense, Rob Roy would fit in the craft cocktail market. The craft cocktail market (or movement, I should say) started about 10 years ago. Call it a renaissance. Call it a resurgence of classic cocktails. Either way, people have been appreciating finer spirits and cocktails in the past decade. Rob Roy’s Anu attributes the origins of this movement to a couple of cocktails bars in New York – PDT (Please Don’t Tell) and Dutch Kills, for whom she also used as inspiration for Rob Roy.
Customer outreach is mostly done via word of mouth and the occasional blog or twitter post. Although, in the beginning, Anu attributes a large part of Rob Roy’s success to having the right mix of connections – writers and bloggers for various food and beverage magazines and papers throughout Seattle, eager to write a piece on Seattle’s latest and greatest.