I strolled into the Carousel bar around 5:00pm yesterday in hopes of meeting up with the blogging crew. It was fairly quiet so I sat down to work my rum judging post. Before long however, the entourage began arriving. Like some orchestrated puppet show, bloggers arrived one by one, searched quizzically around the room, invariably caught one of our eyes, and made their way over for a hearty hello, handshake, and more than likely a big hug.
In no particular order, let me present the cast (more are arriving today too):
– Paul Clarke
– Jeffrey Morganthaler
– Craig Mrusek, aka Dr. Bamboo
– Blair “Tiki” Reynolds
– Seamus Harris
– Jay Hepburn
– Craig Hermann and wife
– Gabriel and wife
– Who am I embarrassingly forgetting or attributing a wife to that I shouldn’t be?
After several rounds at the Carousel bar, including Vieux Carres, Sazeracs, and Herbsaints on ice, we headed to Coop’s Place for dinner. This is where you’ll find some of the best jambalaya in town; its lovingly packed with rabbit, smoked pork sausage, and it’s spiced to perfection. Our group was big enough that we nearly filled the bar, a theme that would be prevalent that evening.
After Coop’s we headed to the French 75 for French 75’s. Beyond the bar being classy, the cocktail was delicious, and many more were ordered up. Shamus and I chatted about his worldly travels and the role of spirits in New Zealand and Shanghai while Dr. Bamboo, eying a bottle of Luxardo Maraschino, sat next to me and taught the bartender how to make an aviation.
- 2oz gin
- 1oz lemon juice
- 2t sugar
- champagne, to top
Shake with ice and strain into a chilled champagne glass. Top delicately with champagne.
From there, I was bound, gagged, and forced to reveal the location of Pat Obrien’s, where certain unnamed parties* demanded that florescent, evil witch’s brew known as the hurricane. I’m actually typing this in the laundry room of nearby hotel, as the bartender thought I needed a bit of cooling off and decided to deposit my beverage all over my left leg instead of on the table. After one small sip from each combatant, it was agreed that my wisdom was just, and that Hurricanes were disgusting cesspools of flavorless spirit and kool-aid like horror.
With that fine taste in our mouths, we headed back to the Carousel Lounge to relax and finish up the evening. The bar stopped rotating, and the evening came to an end.
Today is packed! Opening Tales Reception at 2pm, Blogger Reception at 4:30pm, and then the opening ceremony dinner at 7:30pm. I’ll do my best to snag some good photos… as the only ones last night were of us looking very disturbed in front of our Hurricanes.
*Blair and Craig