Surrounded by pinball tables, KaCee Solis-Robertson swizzles and shakes double-batch cocktails behind the bar at Wedgehead. Hers are the self-described "freakishly small hands" seen clutching rosary beads on the logo of her new canned cocktail brand, Little Hands Stiff Drinks.
After serving at and tending the bars of Portland establishments like Clyde Common, Bar Casa Vale and, most recently, Freeland Spirits, this is Solis-Robertson's breakout venture. Little Hands is currently running the cocktails-to-go program at the Northeast Sandy Boulevard pinball arcade.
Solis-Robertson's cocktails are steeped in a local-supports-local ethos. The Sleep Witch, a tart, neon-fuchsia-colored drink, features local Dogwood Distilling vodka infused with Washington-based Tea Hunter's Blue Valentine lemon-ginger tea. Each 16-ounce can ($18-$22) contains two servings, and Solis-Robertson makes them to order.
Behind the bar at Wedgehead, she measures, shakes, and squeezes fresh citrus into a mixing glass before pouring it into a can and sealing it with a cannulator. The Sleep Witch gets its pucker (and purple color) from a healthy squeeze of lemon that mixes with blue butterfly pea flowers in the tea, while the Cha Cha is made with homemade vegan horchata. The canning process doesn't hinder the smoky, starchy drink but Solis-Robertson does expect you to crack and sip immediately—these aren't pasteurized, after all.
The drink, along with a complimentary cup of ice, is in your hands 30 minutes later when you pick it up or have Wedgehead deliver it—which the bar does itself, to avoid "bloodsucking third-party apps." From there, imbibing instructions from Solis-Robertson are simple: "You just pour over ice and get to drinkin'!"
DRINK: Wedgehead, 3728 NE Sandy Blvd., 503-477-7637, wedgeheadpdx.com. 4-10 pm Wednesday-Sunday.