Southern Wine & Spirits – McGillin’s – A Not So Tall Tale of A Chance Meeting

Every year I would hear about this event where 1000 – 1500 restaurant & bar movers and shakers would attend to try out the new liquors being offered by Southern Wine & Spirits brands. For the past few years the event has been held at the Grand Ballroom of the Hyatt at the Bellevue.

 Brad Waxman (r) is a veteran of 32 years in the
wine and spirits industry. Mr. Waxman started his career with Superior
Wine & Spirits of Pennsylvania in 1977. In January 1999, he joined Southern
Wine and Spirits of Pennsylvania as General Manager of the Pennsylvania
Wine and Spirits Division.  In January 2002, he was named Executive Vice
President, General Sales Manager of Southern Wine and Spirits of
Pennsylvania. In January 2008, Mr. Waxman was promoted to the position
of Executive Vice President / General Manager. Above with his son Alex Waxman, who also works for Southern Wine & Spirits.

 Red Schiller, State Account Manager – PA at Beam Inc Sharon Phillips Waxman, SPW Productions, Plus is the President of the International Special Events Society (ISES) New Jersey South. Don Tierney, Division Vice President at Beam Global Spirits & Wine, Chuck Silio, executive vice president, wine manager, has been with Southern Wine and Spirits of Pennsylvania for 27 years and Joe Caka, Southern Wine & Spirits

 Mary Becht and Zach Seidman, GM Craft & Claw. Zach tells me the place has gotten a great start. I can’t wait to have a chance to go check it out. It’s the old Mad River at 126 Chestnut Stree. YELP of course is right on top of things yelping it up.

 Tom Jordan and Terry Fitzgerald. It’s a great night to catch up on old friends and clients.

This was a free event. I always wondered how many people could crash this event, although we all had to wear wristbands to allow us in the various rooms. I think if I were a drinker and not a blogger, and I had well you know, I would go out and buy a lot of wristbands. Do people still try and crash parties these days? I know when I lived in NYC it was a sport, especially the celebrity parties.

 Joanne Donahoe and Patrick Donohoe

Sharon Phillips Waxman and Moi

Gaby Gock, GM McGillin’s, Chris Mullins, McGillin’s,, with Megan Woody, Megan’s great grandmother was Mercedes McGillin Hooper who sold McGillin’s to sold it to brothers and experienced barkeeps, Henry Spaniak and Joe Shepaniak in 1958 (who spelled their last names differently, odd.) Keeping it in the family, Henry’s daughter, Mary Ellen Spaniak Mullins and her husband, Chris Mullins have run the restaurant since 1993.

Mary Ellen and Chris’ son, Christopher, Jr. (Henry’s grandson), recently joined the business.Gaby knew Megan and by chance they ran into her at the event, and by chance I was standing there and got this photo. Valerie Bryant (r) (Source)

 Sharon Phillips Waxman and John Colabelli 
 Daniel Keo and Marc Ferra

 Random happy peeps

I want to thank Southern Wine & Spirits for providing the liquor to my 5th Anniversary Party held at Reserve via rep Christal Watkins in September. We raised nearly 3,000 for Gilda’s Club of SJ.

Kristyn Aldrich, Vincent and Adrienne Diaz
I then headed for dinner with Chris, and Gabby. We met up with Bill Gerhman at The Dandelion Pub. I had only had lunch there once before with Michael Klein a few years back. I have baggage, it was there he gave me the Dear John news that at some point soon he would be bagging his column to focus on food. You know from 2007 – 2010 my photos appeared in the Philadelphia Inquirer. 
Anyway the food and company were delicious last night.