Of all the of the cool details in the Star Trek universe, our favorite is easily the replicator—a microwave-sized cutout in the wall that can create any dish, snack, or drink with a simple command.
We may be a long way off from enjoying replicated meals, but at CES this year we had the chance to drink a margarita mixed by what might be the next-best thing.
Somabar is a robotic bartender that was initially funded on Kickstarter last year. Since then, the device has been through several iterations (the one I used on the trade show floor being the most recent). It’s roughly the size of a mini-fridge, but the rows of cylindrical booze/mixer pods lining its side make it look like something out of Blade Runner.
The way it works is pretty simple: Just choose a drink from the Somabar app (which knows the liquor and mixers you’ve chosen for your pods), place a glass beneath the Somabar’s spout, and let the good times roll.
Booth attendants referred to it as a “Keurig for cocktails.” And yes, there are certainly similarities, but Somabar feels a little more interactive than your average K-Cup machine. For starters, the app is stocked with over 300 cocktail recipes. What’s more, anyone can upload their own recipes, so there’s almost no end to the amount of stupid drinking decisions you and your friends can make.
So how did the margarita taste? Well, it tasted... like a margarita. A particularly strong one, at that.
Somabar will keep itself clean with an automated water-flushing system and its pods are dishwasher safe. It's in the final stages of manufacturing and will most likely retail for $429.