Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in

How Monsieur Works: The Hardware View

Monsieur's Android-Powered Bartender: Get Your Drink On
By

Monsieur is running on Android, which powers a controller that, in turn, controls a thermoelectric cooler, temperature sensors, cup sensors, and lighting (essentially, everything mechanical). Peristaltic pumps blast out the various liquids within a milliliter of accuracy. 

Givens says that the vacuum pumps don't naturally allow for carbonation, but the company patented a technique to make this possible. Monsieur's thermoelectric coolers are similar to those used in small wine refrigerators, rather than the full compressor systems contained in a typical refrigerator, making the robot more environmentally friendly (Ed.: Though, as anyone with a wine collection will tell you, thermoelectric units may impose other tradeoffs...).

Monsieur includes Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, GPS, and ZigBee-capable hardware for interaction with an automated home, because heaven forbid your garage door can't alert Monsieur that you're just seconds from that Pink Squirrel (hey, it actually tastes really good). In fact, the idea is to keep the options open for various drink-making triggers, whether that's an event within an app, or eventually allowing users to write situational rules like celebrating a touchdown at a Super Bowl party. I went ahead and put in a request for audio detection of screaming children; after one scream, I want a Cosmo.

There's also a rechargeable battery for remote locations, such as the underground parties in New York that we just saw on Law and Order: SVU.

The display in the prototype is a Nexus 10 tablet, but Givens says the company will build its own 10-inch LCD screen for the final production units. There will also be options for 13- and 22-inch screens.

Though it's referred to as a robot (and we had some pretty high hopes for a bartender on wheels), the Monsieur is really just a box. The prototype is made of wood, and the company will also make a stainless steel model, a high-end polycarbonate model, and a clear acrylic version where you can see all of the lighting and pumps. The Monsieur will be produced in a factory, but hand-assembled, Judge tells me. While we're not looking at the Moto X line-up of color choices, Judge says that are plans for variety, suiting everyone from the local frat house to the snooty book club.

The Monsieur comes in four-, eight-, and 16-container versions. The big one is really for commercial use, measuring about 50% wider than the eight-container version (22" wide x 18" deep x 21" high) that was making my Bahama Mamas. The four-container version (12"x12"x18") sells for $1500, and it's sort of the rum and coke model. Not as much fun, but it'll get the job done if you like your cocktails simple.

Givens says that Monsieur doesn't have the specialized container needed to preserve wine. Yet.

Display all 7 comments.
This thread is closed for comments
  • -1 Hide
    itzsnypah , November 2, 2013 3:54 AM
    I originally clicked this thinking "the energy drink company is making bartending equipment?!?". Then I read that this Monsieur isn't the one I'm thinking of and I went "I wonder how long until they get sued out of the Monsieur name".
  • 6 Hide
    ZolaIII , November 2, 2013 4:46 AM
    One Cappuccino late & they can't get low sued for the name it's common word.
    The dream come true, computer that can hold & serve you cafe... ideal thing for those that thought that optical drive is a drink holder. :) 
  • 0 Hide
    Durandul , November 2, 2013 11:11 PM
    I like how the app lists your state's BAC limit, just in case you are too drunk to remember.
  • -1 Hide
    vinnywong , November 3, 2013 3:02 AM
    Good luck with that.
  • 0 Hide
    4745454b , November 3, 2013 7:38 AM
    IDK. I can see business's having this. But part of the fun of the house get togethers is making the drinks. It really seems to me it would take away one of the more fun things that happens when I have drinking company over. (though at least I won't wake up the next morning finding margarita mix spilled all over my floor.)
  • 1 Hide
    priority1 , November 4, 2013 2:53 PM
    I'm wondering how this machine (when it goes to sports venues etc.) is going to verify that people are aged 21 and up. Maybe a drivers license card scanner?
  • 0 Hide
    Michael Robinson , November 11, 2013 3:46 AM
    I think it needs to be mobile - preferably on a mono wheel (ie claptrap in Borderlands 2). I I'm not sure I'd have the energy to get to the machine or the coherence to use it. It might suit my office but I'm not sure how well it would go down at Google.