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danielspioneer-beyondcocktailsAfter an amazing concert at Red Rocks, you may want a drink – a cheap drink – along with delicious food. It’s hard enough to find cool places near your home, but what do you do when you’re not familiar with the area?

With a simple click on or the smartphone app, you’ll have immediate access to local happy hour specials.

We have Daniels graduate and entrepreneur, Derek Bennington, to thank for this creative invention. No more wasting time on Google attempting to locate old and outdated happy hour information. Beyond Cocktails provides a platform for restaurants and bars to post about their specials in real time. For example, did you know that our local sandwich shop on Evans, Snarfs, offers a $25 bar tab on your birthday? By visiting the website or downloading the app, users can take advantage of great deals like this and more. Currently, the platform is only through restaurants and bars near DU; however, Derek plans on expanding to Boulder this summer with aspirations of going nationwide.

While Beyond Cocktails is easy for everyone to use, it has not been an easy road for creator and owner Derek Bennington who started out as an engineering major in 2005. After realizing engineering wasn’t for him, he ended up as a self-taught sommelier (wine expert) and worked at Baur’s Ristorante downtown where he became the general manager within a year. After two years he ventured over to Root Down and became a floor manager which led him to the Republic National Distributing Company where he gained insight into beverage distribution at restaurants. With an extensive background in the restaurant business, Derek attended Daniels to explore his passion and experience that ultimately let to the creation of Beyond Cocktails.

So how did Daniels help this innovative business? According to Derek, the people that surrounded him at Daniels were always there to support and guide his dream.

“The friends and contacts you develop at Daniels provide a launching pad for success,” Derek says.

Derek’s advice for aspiring entrepreneurs?

Put yourself out there! “Everybody has great ideas; you have more ability than you give yourself credit for.”