The Gin Lab: My Recap

Recently, I had the opportunity to attend an event called The Gin Lab. Being that I don’t have much knowledge about gin compared to other spirits, I figured it would be a great event for me to attend and learn a thing or two.

This event was held at Sbraga in Philadelphia. I had never been there before, but I’ve heard great things about the venue so I was even more excited to attend this event. When I arrived, I was late, but I don’t think I missed too much from the start of the event. I seemed to arrive when the brand rep was explaining the history and process of making gin.

I learned a lot that I never knew about gin, especially about how essential Juniper is in making Gin. I think its fair to say that its as important as when making whiskey and they types and treatment of the casks that make the spirit as great as it is. I also learned that in making gin your own, there are endless combinations of Juniper and herbs and fruits, in terms of what can be added to it in order to make it something supremely unique.

To start with our hands-on portion of the educational process, we sampled 3 different types of gin by Tanqueray. Among the 3 were Tanqueray London Dry (original), Tanqueray 10, and Nolet’s Silver Dry Gin (pictured above). If you can’t see in the picture, (I listed the tasting notes in each) It was a bit hard for me to distinguish exactly what I was tasting in each so I just went with what it felt like to me or what it reminded me of. Tanqueray London Dry, I tasted woody/oak notes and various types of sour/tart fruits. In Tanqueray 10 I picked up scents of floral notes and tasted light hints of juniper, and an essence of some sweet that I couldn’t quite put my finger on. In the Nolet Silver I kept tasting a lot of floral notes and citrus. the scent smelled a biton the sweet side kinda similar to candy and at the same time was “perfumey”. (yes I know that is not a word)

After tasting the 3 I can say that I preferred the Nolet’s Silver overall mainly because it felt like it finished smoother and seemed to have a fruitier/sweetness to it instead of the spicy notes that I was picking up in the original Tanqueray. Next fav out of the 3 would be the Tanqueray 10 because of the scent that I picked up before it touched my lips. The scent was very floral and almost minty. It was very refreshing and more palatable than the other Tanqueray.

After that exercise of the tasting I could more so see what it is about each gin that I liked. I obviously prefer the fruit notes of gin, and with our next exercise in the lab, we were able to make our own gin via a whipped cream dispenser.

yep….a whipped cream dispenser

So, with the whipped cream dispenser it was totally new to me, but apparently not to a lot of other people, that you could use it for infusing gin with whatever botanicals, fruits, herbs, etc. (mind blown). To do this we were paired with the person that sat across from us and we picked 2 ingredients that we wanted to make our gin with. I selected Jasmine and Lime and my partner selected Thai Chili and Sage (sounds interesting right?!)

So we went to the foraging table (pictured above) and selected our items and Juniper. Came back to our table to add in our distilled spirit and charged it in our whipped cream dispenser and after straining it into a wine glass… viola!

Behold, our one of a kind custom made in the the Gin Lab, GIN!

I loved the way it tastes. Before sipping it, you could smell the Jasmine and the lime. Upon tasting it you could really taste the earthy-ness of the sage and the citrus of the lime. The Thai Chili showed up as a nice spicy finish that made for a more developed taste in my opinion.

Once we finished sampling our Gin, the true test came when it was included in a gin and tonic cocktail and honestly, I think it held up great. Unfortunately, when added it with ice and tonic, the jasmine scent went away, and the earthy notes from the sage seemed to be less noticeable, but the lime and the chili stayed and made an awesome flavor profile.

And that was the event in a nutshell!

Would I consider myself a fan of gin now? No, but I definitely have gained a new appreciation and a lot of knowledge for it. I feel like I can now offer more recommendations to clients of Pour Models and friends who are looking for something new to drink or something with a bit more customization and uniqueness to it compared to the popular spirits. Im currently, in the process of learning more about these whipped cream dispensers so I can get one of my own and start doing some things with other flavor ideas I have for gin. Who knows, I might have to start the process of making my own gin one day!

Cheers!

“I don’t fit the casting description, should I still go?” – #ModelTipTuesday #ModelAdvice

Another #ModelTipTuesday post for ya! These posts will be dedicated to your questions about modeling. If there are any questions you have, send them to me via any of my social media sites, or email me your questions. I will either respond to them directly or respond to you and post the question as a blog post for others to learn from. So, Here I go!

 

I recently had a comment on one of my posts asking this very question. The reader basically said that there was an audition that she was going to go to but she didn’t fit the height requirement for one of the characters that she was auditioning for. She wondered if she should go…

 

My advice?

 

I don’t think she should go or at least audition for an other role where she fits the description.

The casting directors put out the requirements for the roles or the booking a certain way for a reason. It could be that the clothes for the shoot or show are a certain size or the height of the model has to be a certain height in order to fit into a particular set setup with a model or actor of a complementary height.

There aren’t too many chances that you not fitting the requirements are going to change the director or the agent’s mind in regards to you winning the role just because you showed up and auditioned for it, simply because its not what the role calls for.

 

And that’s my 2 cents!

I changed my name…on Social Media ;-)

For the past 10+ years on various social media networks my screenname was “CompleteBeauty”. In 2015, I turned 30 (dun dun DUNNNNN) and I took a look back on my digital life and re-evaluated how I am known online and if it really reflects me. I have been modeling and working with various beverage brands for 8+ years and most people that know me offline know about my passion for beverages. I realized that the “CompleteBeauty” name no longer reflects all that I do. I love doing shows, shoots, and being in front of the camera, watching and being a part of the business and marketing of it, and especially the events. For me the modeling and the beverage industry have gone hand in hand. It’s opened a lot of doors for me and enabled me to go places that I haven’t gone before and start a business that I never dreamed that I would start. I wanted my online persona to reflect that and thus I am now:

@TopModelWithBottles on Instagram and

@TopModelwBtls on Twitter

I am still keeping my website name the same. AleanElston.com won’t be changed anytime soon, but you can expect more content about my passion for beverages in addition to my modeling and model advice/tips.

My online life is finally going to be a reflection of my real life…and that’s Modeling and beverages 🙂

Follow me! – If you let me know you found me via my blog, I’ll follow back!!!! 🙂

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“How do I know if its a scam?” Part 1 #ModelTipTuesday

Day 4 – Still kickin it on Alex Beadon’s Blog Challenge and today’s challenge is to answer a frequently asked question in a blog post. I think that this is something that I;ll add to my blog on a weekly basis. #ModelTipTuesday will be dedicated to your questions about modeling. If there are any questions you have, send them to me via any of my social media sites, or email me your questions. I will either respond to them directly or respond to you and post the question as a blog post for others to learn from. So, Here I go!

One of the constant questions that I get asked about is scams. This modeling business can be shaaaady baby! I like to think that most people are inherently good but the ones that aren’t make it hard to decipher the good ones from the bad. I know it makes it hard to know who to trust and who is really there for your best interest or theirs, but there are a few things that you have to look at in order to really understand if something is a scam or not.

Check this out

Signs this might be a scam (according to Alean):

  1. If they contact you by email
    1. They are speaking in is broken English, or text message slang, or slang period
    2. The email address that they are emailing you from is non identifying (ex: 7394xytty@gmail.com) OR it doesn’t match the name of the person sending it (ex: Im Lisa Johnson but my email address is MartinElizabeth@gmail.com)
    3. They tell you they work with a well known brand or designer like, Ralph Lauren or Gucci (No high fashion brand is booking models sight unseen via the internet)
    4. They tell you that you have been selected to work for that big name client and want to pay you a large sum of money for your work but part of it will be paid upfront. (NO AGENCY WILL PAY YOU UPRONT AND ASK FOR THE MONEY BACK!)
    5. In order to you to be paid you have to provide them with a ton of personal information and your bank account information (ALL THAT INFO IS NOT NEEDED ESPECIALLY BANK ACCOUNT INFO)
    6. They leave no contact info (phone number, address, etc.) for you to contact them if you have any questions or want to look them up.

Take a look at this email that was sent to a model friend of mine.

 

Hello,

 Good afternoon to you over there and hope you are doing fine today?

thanks for your response, Presently the company (Ralph Lauren)

needs a model to advertise their new outfit and i am one of the

favored supervisor for the project coming up next month in your state.

Subsequently,The date is between 28th and 29th of June (NOTE THAT ON

YOUR CALENDAR) and the shoot location will be somewhere very close to

you and i will let you know it after details have been received…

 Beside how much is your charge for 4hrs in a day (WE PAY $250 TO

MODELS FOR PER HOUR SHOOT) and you are gonna do that for 2 days (Total

$2,000 for 8hours).

Transportation allowance will be included as we continue to work

together,you could be invited over to the company to sign a contract

with us if you pose pretty well. In order for this effect i would

implore you to provide me with your statistics (SIZE) as soon as

possible? so that what you need would be taken care of asap…

 You will first receive $300 to start with,which will be sent to you

immediately,this is for your transportation allowance only (NOTE: This

payment is for your transport ONLY and your full payment for the job

will be paid to you in cash immediately after the shoot in the

location).

 The photo shoots will be taken and sent to the company and it will be

display on our online web and magazine (worldwide).

 The company have personal photographers and makeup artist,so we have

made all necessary arrangement for your good looking on that day and

also our photographers are available to give you best directive. They

will be contacting you for proper

arrangement of time and location after payment has been made.

Bonus: The cloths you will be wearing for the shoot.

ESCORT:As matter of choice,you can bring along any one of your choice

to the shooting venue. All traveling Expenses, Food and

Accommodations/Hotel would be covered by my company. my company will

cover all the expenses on your escort.

EXPECTATIONS: You must have positive ID.

You must have a nice pedicure and manicure.

You must have nice smile and humble personality.

You must be willing to pose very well and good.

No hairy armpits.

 Reference and other forms/documented papers will be send to you via

courier service a week before the shoot.

 Guess the arrangement is understood? In order for payment to be made

to you on time,i would need you to provide me with the following

info…..

 

Name in full:

Residential address:

City:

State:

Zip-code:

Phone number(cell and home):

Age:

Charges $2,000(8 hours):YES/NO

Transport allowance $300:

OCCUPATION:

AGE:

ATTACH 2 RECENT PICTURES:

 

Measurements:

 

Best Regards,

Rick McNeil.

 

This kind of scam is a variation of the Nigerian Email scam. You know those emails that say they are a random Prince from some unheard of land and  they want you to claim your inheritance left by a distant relative, and they want to send you a check for the amount but you have to pay them money back once you cash the check… Yeah they took that to modeling. Check out this link that details more red flags you should be on the look out for if you happen to get a random email like this one – http://www.newmodels.com/Nigeria.html

 

Good luck out there in model land! and remember a Good Model is a Smart Model!

 

Be smart lovelies!

 

xoxo, Alean

How I got started as a model…

The header pic, is a pic from about 10 years ago, maybe more an 10 years, of my first swimsuit shoot in Atlantic City. I thought I was DOOOOOOING IT! lol Thank goodness that was the beginning and there was a lot of improvement to be had!

 

Day 2 of the 7 day blogging challenge by Alex Beadon, and the challenge is to write about how you got your start as an entrepreneur. Since my modeling is how I got my start as an entrepreneur, I decided to detail that. If you want to know how it got me to start my business, I’ll be detailing that in the future on my company’s blog, “The Pour”

 

Here Goes!

 

What initially drew you in to become a model?

 

I have a cousin that was a model when I was a kid. I remember looking at her pictures in her portfolio and some of her tear sheets from the ads and print work that she had done and thought to myself, I want to do that. The pretty, perfect, and polished look that she portrayed was what initially sparked my interest in modeling. I think I was around 9 years old when I realized a model is what I wanted to be.

 

What challenges did you face?

 

Well, the number one challenge that I faced was getting started. I didn’t know how or where to start, who could point me in the right direction, how to get work, what did I need to be a model, what was a scam and what was worth pursuing? And so forth.

My first comp card. Thank the Lord for growth lol (that email address, I no longer use by the way)
My first comp card. Thank the Lord for growth lol
(that email address, I no longer use by the way)

How did you overcome them?

 

I did a lot of researching, back when I was starting there were a few ‘urban’ models who had websites that displayed their portfolios and resumes and also gave a lot of tips on how they got started (before blogging was popular) so I took some of their advice from their sites as well as other modeling advice sites and started out on pursing my career. A lot of what I have come to learn has been from trial and error and research to figure out what path would be the best path for me to try. Through my research, I learned that pictures are the main thing that will get you booked and without them you won’t be taken seriously as a model. SO I set out to do a photo shoot. I found a few social networking sites dedicated to models and photographers and I put a few pictures of myself on there that opened myself as looking to shoot in order to build my portfolio and I had a number of photographers respond willing to shoot me and a few even for free! I decided to shoot with one photographer (I paid him) and ended up learning a TON from my initial shoot and used those pictures to book more shoots in order to perfect my posing and my port, and thus I began to seek out work and the bookings started to come.

 

How did you get your first booking?

 

My first booking was fashion show that I was referred to do by the same photographer that I did my very first shoot with. It was for a local designer, I can’t remember her name, but I was booked for that show based on the pictures he showed her that he shot of me. I didn’t even know how to walk the runway I was a PURE newbie, Lol But I booked it!

 

What has been your biggest lesson as a model?

 

The biggest lesson I have learned as a model is the vital fact that pictures and your network can and will take you places. Without the pictures and without knowing people you won’t get far. It’s like the saying goes, “Its not always what you know, its who you know and who knows you.”

Allow me to reintroduce myself…

My name is Hov, (Oh) H-to-the-O-V.……..
But not really tho! Lol

Hi I'm Alean

If you haven’t figured it out by the domain name of the site, my name is

Alean Elston

(AL-leen ELS-ten)

and welcome to my digital space!

I’ve been modeling for 12 years now (and still getting stronger) and as I’ve gone about in my career I’ve come across some awesome people and learned a lot about business and a ton about myself. What I’ve realized is that I learned the most when I shared with others and when they shared with me. It enabled me to grow and I hope that I’ve enabled others to grow as well. With that being said, my goal is to connect with the aspiring models, the professional models, the drinks and business enthusiast, and the beverage and modeling/entertainment industry folks who want to follow along with me in our journey with my blog. I believe that if you are one of those people, then we have a few things in common.

 

I love modeling, modeling led me to start my own business, starting my own business enabled me to work with various beverage brands and sparked the passion of me working within the beverage industry. All of these things are very connected in my life and if you have a passion for any one of those things, there is where we share our connection. I’ve been in your shoes as the inexperienced model, looking to find out how to get started and how to start booking shoots, shows, and getting paid. I’ve been the business owner that struggled (sometimes I still struggle) to get the first client and develop the momentum to continue to build a customer base. I am the person passionate about cocktails and wine and beers and wanted to learn all I can about the business of it, I’m also the blogger that lives life just like you but my goal is to share my experiences and ideas and to connect with those who share the same sentiment, and build and grow.
The one thing that I hope that you take away from my blog is that you can have multiple goals but they mean nothing if you don’t pursue them. All it takes is a few baby steps towards your goals for them to gain traction and watch it grow faster than the speed of light. I’ve watched it happen to a number of my peers, and now it’s my turn.

Watch me work.
If you need to reach out to me with any questions, or you would like to work together please don’t hesitate to email me – alean@aleanelston.com

5 “Business Models” who are great at minding their business

They say it takes several streams of income in order to be wealthy. Which got me thinking about other models who have done more than modeling to create more revenue streams. I like to think of it as Business Models Minding their Business. (cute right?! :-D)

As a model, you should always conduct yourself as a business and these models have done that plus created seprate businesses that have generated more for them in addition to their modeling. Click  the next page to check out my short list.

How to Get Work as a Promotional Model #modeladvice #modellife

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It’s a lot simpler than you think. If you follow me on Instagram, you have seen that I work a lot of events as a model for various beverage brands, in addition to the work that I do with my company (Pour Models) as a special events bartender and model. I make a good portion of my income as a promo model for various brands and I am always asked how others can get started doing this type of work. I know if looks fun and it is, fun that I get paid for having and I get paid to travel to do.

Me as a Promotional Model for Remy Martin!
Me as a Promotional Model for Remy Martin!

With that said, here’s my advice on how you can get started working as a promo model making anywhere between $20 and $50 per hour and more!

#Goals…Let’s just say I’m setting some more…

Welp, summer is over according to the calendar. Labor Day marks the unofficial end of fun in the sun. For me, today marks the start of a fresh new month. What I usually do at the start of a month is plan out my bookings and figure out how to fill it a bit more or if its packed, how I’m going to survive such busi-ness! Lol I also take the time to review goals that I have set for myself in the past and think about new ones or keep the old ones and try my best to achieve them all. Some of my past goals have included:

If you have been following my blogging habits (or lack thereof), that first goal that I mentioned was a failure lol but it only failed because I became busy with more client and model bookings. Even though it was a failure other goals were a great success and there’s more time for me this month for me to modify that goal, among others, and of course set new ones to achieve.

With that being said, I wanted to take a different approach to my goals. I’m a firm believer in “The Secret” and I noticed that a few people that I follow on social media following the law of attraction and I’ve been watching their goals come to pass. The way I see it, if they can bravely put their goals out there and I can watch it unfold, I should have no problem doing the same. So here I go, my goals for September 2014:

  1. Acquire a booking or contract that builds upon my strategy for financial and career growth
  2. Do 3 photoshoots with various phenomenal photographers and clients
  3. Consistently blog EVERYDAY
  4. Vlog at least 2 times a month
  5. Continue to develop my ‘jumping’ skills
  6. Reach and maintain a new account threshold

So now that it’s out there, I’m going to work on making it all come my way!

Be sure to follow me on social media to watch it all unfold!

Facebook – facebook.com/AleanElston

Instagram – instagram.com/completebeauty

Twitter – twitter.com/completebeauty

Pinterest – pinterest.com/AleanElston

Want Success? “You gotta Jump off that cliff…” according to #SteveHarvey [VIDEO]

Sometimes it can be a bit hard to make it in business, but Steve has a point when he tells you you have to jump…

It can be a bit scary and I experience this everyday. Sometimes I don’t jump and I remain safe, but then I realize I’m missing out on soaring. So with that I’m learning to take more jumps…I’ll tell you how that all works out for me.

 

What are some of the things that you need to jump for?