How Zappos and Fernet Saved Downtown Vegas
PUNCH (August 5. 2014)
This piece for Punch was a spin-off. I was sent to Las Vegas a couple of years ago by Sunset magazine, to write this story about the reinvention of downtown Las Vegas. While I was there, all this stuff about Fernet and drinking kept cropping up, and for mysterious reasons Sunset’s editors didn’t find this germane to the topic I’d been sent to write about.
I thought that urbanism and drinking were linked, and that some of the folks that I’d met while there got this. So I wrote up this short piece for Punch, in part so I could sort it out in my own mind.
The picture above shows the Fermet dispenser I saw in CEO Tony Hseih’s private rumpus room, in one of three condo units he joined together in a downtown tower. It’s a repurposed Jägermiester dispenser crafted by his staff and given to him as a present. I do not know of any other CEOs of $2 billion companies that have ready access to chilled Fernet. If you do, please let me know. Maybe it’s a thing, and I’m just not in the loop.