This mobile bar is likely unlike any you’ve ever seen. Kate Herrod, owner of Just Call Kate Mobile Libations, joined us today to share how she was able to turn a 1982 Piaggio Ape into a fun new business.
1. Tell me about your background and how you got into this line of work.
I am an Indiana University graduate. I majored in Hospitality and Tourism Management and minored in Ecotourism, as well as Parks and Recreation. I have worked in some field of service since I was 14. I have worked for pizza joints, Hilton Hotels, Marriott/White Lodging hotels and a Hotel Investment/Management company as an Executive Assistant. While I loved most aspects of each of these jobs, I was ready for something else, but I wasn’t sure what that something else was. During the summer 2020 lockdown, I found myself looking through old travel pictures from Italy, a place I am longing to go back to. I came across the attached picture of myself in San Gimignano, Italy and my memories came flooding back. Conversations with a friend of how fun it would be to own a Piaggio Ape and make “something” of it. That is when I realized “this is my something else.”
I began doing research on what Apes were being used for these days. Mobile Bars have been exploding across Europe and now the trend is really setting in here in the U.S. I am finding that owners in the U.S. have a wider variety of Mobile Bars – from renovated horse trailers to old milk delivery trucks. I set out on my search to find myself a Piaggio Ape and never turned back.
2. Tell me about your vehicle, where it came from?
My 1982 Piaggio Ape comes a long way. I worked with a company who drove from their home location in Poland to the Campobasso Region of Italy, loaded my baby up on their trailer and drove back to Poland to begin our design/renovation process.
3. Did you have a love of craft beer before the Mobile Libations or did the business bring you to craft beer. What kinds of beers do you like?
What I love most is having a crisp, cold drink, throwing parties and having fun. So I would say that mindset and feeling brought me to Mobile Libations. Now, I get to lead myself and enjoy a dreamy job with endless possibilities.
Yes! I am totally into craft beer, although my Budweiser pallet isn’t too hard to please! Whenever I go to a new brewery I love to get a flight and allow the bartender to choose their favorites for me to try. I always enjoy a pilsner, brown ale or a Kölsch, but am willing to try any beers actually. Mobile Libations is available to serve any style of drink on tap though – from beer, wine and Prosecco to cold brew, craft cocktails or more simply, lemonade!
4. What kinds of events do you like to do and have you done? What is it that you offer to clients?
I am still getting started. My scooter arrived state side in May and the next day I threw a birthday party for my momma with Centerpoint Brewing’s El Gato on tap. It was super delicious and ice cold. It was such a rush to pour for the first party. I am available for hire beginning September 2021, so bring on the parties!
I am happy to be a part of any style event that needs a cold beverage served. Weddings of any style, funerals/celebration of life, backyard parties, birthday’s, parties for no reason, bachelor/bachelorette parties, pre-wedding and receptions, corporate parties, beer festivals – the list could go on for days!
I am a dry bar cart for hire. This means, you are hiring me to bartend your event with the Mobile Libations scooter and the alcohol you purchased. I do offer keg coordination for clients who aren’t sure what style of beverage they want – I can give suggestions, I can pick up the kegs prior to the event and return the keg post event. I do not sell any alcohol though 🙂
I offer a beautiful bartending experience that is a level up from a simple bartender and a jockey keg with a skirted table.
Just Call Kate also offers home and business organization services. I created Just Call Kate originally for personalized organization services – pantry, kid areas, linen and clothing closets, garages, offices, attics – you name it, I’ve organized it. I grew up in a larger family with a smaller space and from a young age organizing is something that’s come easy to me. I have always had the patience and eye to find just the right spot for every item. It is tough for people to make sense of spaces sometimes and it is such a privilege for me that my clients allow me into their intimate space to help with that transformative process of gaining control back. I love the feeling of coming into an overwhelming space and creating the peace the space deserves. The look on a client’s face when they return to that space gives me all the feels!
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