Sasha Petraske, founder of the legendary Milk & Honey, was found dead in Hudson, New York, on Friday morning, aged 42.
Petraske set up the New York bar in 1999. In 2002, he teamed up with Jonathan Downey to open Milk & Honey in London. In 2012 the original New York location was transformed into Attaboy by two of Petraske’s bartenders, while Milk & Honey moved to a bigger Manhattan location. Last year, in October, the new building’s landlord ‘invoked a redevelopment demolition clause and we have been homeless ever since’, reads the bar’s website.
Georgette Moger, Petraske’s wife, told the New York Times on Friday that the cause of death had not yet been determined, and that he had died overnight.
There has been an outpouring of admiration and tributes from the bar industry around the world. Jonathan Downey took to Twitter, citing Petraske’s house rules for Milk & Honey:
Sasha Petraske’s Milk & Honey House Rules. He changed the way we drink and the way we behaved in bars. pic.twitter.com/1wYAd2NsaQ
— Jonathan Downey (@DowneyJD) August 22, 2015
Shocked by the sudden death of my incredible friend Sasha Petraske. What a wonderful man. Great integrity, unique, thoughtful. A gentleman.
— Jonathan Downey (@DowneyJD) August 21, 2015
Sasha Petraske made me the first 50-50 Dry Martini I ever had, back in 2002. I thought it was weird. Now, it’s how I drink ’em. Thanks, pal.
— David Wondrich (@DavidWondrich) August 22, 2015
Totally in shock. RIP Sasha. You were a colossus and will be deeply missed. http://t.co/APAu51nGa0
— anguswinchester (@anguswinchester) August 21, 2015