The Wicked Bess (my) Story


William Caines

Head Shrub Maker

My Parents were born and raised in Four Roads, Trinidad and Tobago. They grew up only a few houses away from each other at a time and place where the roads were made of dirt and you had to walk to get water. Both of them at different times in their lives, took a giant leap of faith and moved to the United States in search of a better life. As fate would have it, they both ended up in Boston. They met up again years later, fell in love, got married, and had me.  It's probably taken me far too many years to see myself as an actual byproduct of the American Dream.

Growing up outside of Boston, some of my fondest childhood memories involve summer days at Walden's Pond. In between dips in the pond, we would pick berries or snack on the assortment of fruit my mom always packed: peaches, plums, pears, and mangoes. My uncles would bring homemade ginger beer and later these would become shandys. At the time, it never occurred to me that none of the other families on blankets were dipping their fruit into spicy pepper sauce.

Years later, my passion for shrub making sprang out of my passion for bartending and seeing the smiles on peoples faces when they enjoyed a well made balanced cocktail. For me, that balance became the grail; when all the spicy, sweet, earthy and acidic flavors come together they harmonize like Boys II Men. Once I discovered shrubs, they quickly became my secret sauce for creating intricate, well balanced, delicious cocktails quickly and with ease. With all the hard work done ahead of time, when the doors were open, all I had to do was pour and focus on my guests.

2020 has been an interesting year of introspection and being forced out of my comfort zone.   A desire to move away from where technology has taken us; to rediscover the value of human hands put to work; and to create something that makes people smile has led me to this venture. The final product containing nuances of flavor and designed to balance the spirit, will transform your beverage of choice into a delicious craft cocktail or mocktail experience.


William Caines