Morristown businessman Matthew Rosenhouse became wealthy in the 1950s and ’60s selling Geritol, touting it as a healing tonic for those “whose tired blood lacks iron.” I was.
“It was snake oil,” his grandson Warren Bobrow recalls today. He’s looking to build his own legacy by manufacturing cannabis-infused beverages, which, unlike Geritol, deliver exactly what it advertises: good taste and good buzz.
Sold by the bottle and served by the spoon, Gerritol was shamelessly sold from coast to coast in the constant advertising campaigns that sponsored “The Lawrence Welk Show,” among other TV hits of the 20th century.
“It was ethyl alcohol, caramel coloring, flavors,” said Bobrow, 61, who grew up in Morris Township. If not, it was sold in every pharmacy in the United States.”
In 1972, an advertising campaign for Gerritor TV created the demeaning tagline “My wife, I think I’ll keep her”, derided by the then-growing feminist movement.
“My grandfather was pretty successful until the government sued them,” Bobrow said. Rosenhaus was the largest individual shareholder in the film production company Columbia Pictures Industries and was also on the board of Nabisco.
Geritol is now manufactured as a vitamin supplement by Meda Consumer Healthcare in Georgia, but for decades it was no longer a staple in the U.S. pharmaceutical cabinet.
This formula worked for years until the Federal Trade Commission derailed the gravy train. In 1973, the agency accused Gerritor of making “false and misleading claims” that led to the company’s decline and imposed the largest fine in history at the time.
Can Klaus Mezrol ‘Change’ Cannabis Drinks?
After graduating from Morristown Beard School, Bobrow became estranged from his family. There he carved out his own niche in the spirits industry as a brand ambassador known as ‘The Cocktail Whisperer’. He is the author of six of his mixology books, including Apothecary Cocktails: Yesterday’s and Today’s Restorative Drinks.
His subsequent book Cannabis Cocktails, Mocktails and Tonics set him on a new professional path. He ended up formulating, manufacturing and distributing his own concoction to ride the wave of marijuana legalization across America. Planning line for “Klaus” brand beverages. Sold exclusively in the California legal cannabis market.
This drink is a variation of the rum-based cocktail known as a tipunch. But the rum “punch” has been replaced with 10 milligrams of cannabis resin infused in each 8-ounce can from an “indica-leaning hybrid” strain of marijuana known as “Hippie Crusher.”
The mezzolol formula, like Tipanchi, is non-carbonated and flavored with French lime puree, rice vinegar and ginger beer syrup. Because it’s very hot and spicy,” he said.
A July review on the “Good Spirits” blog described the drink as “tropical and vibrant,” containing just 16 calories per can and “alcohol-free.” So you don’t have to worry about mixing sake and drinks.”
“A first of its kind,” Krause says it will likely “change the way you think about cannabis-infused beverages.”
Indica strains of cannabis are known to increase relaxation and reduce insomnia. This is often called a “body high”. Sativa’s “head high” is said to increase creativity, focus, and reduce stress and anxiety. A hybrid contains elements of both.
“It’s not overpowering. It’s as calming as drinking a craft cocktail,” wrote three cannabis industry magazines and recently attracted 35,000 other industry insiders to the annual MJBizCon convention in Las Vegas. “It’s all about providing a little more depth and balance to the alcohol-free craft cocktail experience.”
That’s important to Bob. Although he is a recognized expert in mixology, in 2018 he stopped drinking spirits. Addiction wasn’t the problem, he rather had to drink frequently while working as a brand ambassador.
“Since then, I’ve gone down two shoe sizes and lost 100 pounds,” he said.
I grew up in Gerritor Jr.
Bobrow smoked his first joint at the age of 12, and his wealthy family disowned him.
“My mom gave me Gerritor Jr. every morning before school,” he recalled with a bit of sarcasm. “It was 20% alcohol.”
Bobrow, now 61, said cannabis helped him find balance. He admits that others might object to his preference for pot over alcohol.
“They would be wrong,” he said.
Medical professionals may disagree, but Bobrow, a recent mover to Mendham Township, says cannabis “doesn’t get you drunk, it doesn’t form habits, it doesn’t incapacitate you, it just gives you a hangover the next day.” No,” he claims.
He hopes for nationwide distribution, but so far only California has allowed the sale of mezrol. . There is talk of liberalizing state rules, but “that will take some time,” Bobrow said.
Mezzrole’s initial sales were strong, but sales have slowed as Bobrow moves to new distributors and plans to expand its product line.
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In California, his business model includes retail sales, but Bobrow expects the majority of future distribution to be provided “direct to consumer” through his website. Mezzrole cans currently retail for $12 for him and $40 for him in a 4-pack. The website showcases future varieties of Klaus’ cannabis cocktails, including “Bosphorus” and “1851 Zombie.”
Each one has a colorful taste as its name suggests. The Bosphorus promises “a trip to sunny, muggy Istanbul instead of Constantinople” with traces of bergamot (citrus fruit), apricot and mirin (Japanese rice vinegar). 1851 Zombie, on the other hand, uses three of his cannabis strains instead of rum, “a lovely combination that takes you from sour to sweet and all that naughty.”
Bobrow chose the name Mezroll as a tribute to Mez Mezlow, the infamous pot “connection” of musician and jazz legend Louis Armstrong, famous for his love of marijuana.
“He brought in large amounts of Mexican cannabis from south of the border during the Jazz era and was a much-loved figure in Detroit, Chicago and New York,” Bobrow said. “Well-rolled cannabis cigarettes were known as ‘mezrolles’.”
William Westhoven is a local reporter for DailyRecord.com. For unlimited access to the most important news in your area, Subscribe now or activate your digital account.
Email: wwesthoven@daily record.com