World Cocktail Week Celebrated in Style

As always, I celebrate in style (yea right.)  But for those are of the stylish mindset, you might enjoy the festivities of this past Monday, May 12th, designated by the Museum of the American Cocktail as World Cocktail Day – the beginning of the week they call World Cocktail Week.  Hendrick’s Gin had their now annual Bartender Croquet Tournament at a secret, undisclosed location, that from the photos below, looks a lot like the Chelsea Piers area.  The gin cocktails rendered guests a bit woozy – not making for quality croquet – but who the hell cares! 

By the time 6pm rolled around, Gary Regan, a man you all may know and love to hate, made his grand entrance at Flatiron Lounge, in garb that can only be described as a cross between Keith Richards on the last leg of a concert tour and Billy Crystal in “City Slickers.”  You can be the judge yourself in the photo below.  Tales of the Cocktail hosted this next leg of WCD with their announcements of the official Tales of the Cocktail punch recipe, the lucky bartenders chosen to be apprenti (isn’t that the plural form?), the spirit award nominees, and probably some other stuff that I can’t think of at the present time.  The winning punch recipe (which I have to admit, tasted a bit like the recipe I submitted – so for a few minutes I thought the winning recipe was mine – funny, right?) was a deliciously balanced cocktail created by none other than the Victorian lass Charlotte Voisey.  And wouldn’t ‘ya know it, she managed to put 1/4 oz. of Hendrick’s Gin in their, too.  Go figure.  I have to say it was damn good – and I don’t use that word very often. 

I saw many pals from the cocktail world that night, and after cocktails and a delicious meal at Employees Only, all I wanted to do was to sit back, relax, drink more Partida Tequila, and thank the lord that there will be 5 straight days of the exact same thing come July 16th (Tales of the Cocktail, I mean).  World Cocktail Day is every day for us booze biz folks, in moderation mind you. 

So here’s to all the bar folk across the world, who toasted at midnight this past Monday – I’m sorry I couldn’t last ’til then.  You can be assured that in NOLA, I’ll be up past midnight.

Gary and Lynnette – what city slickers they are!

Ann Rogers announcing the Bartender Apprenti, a program being headed by Phil Ward.  Don’t look so freaked out, Phil, okay?

Charlotte and her winning punch, “Punch and Judy.”  Great name, Charlotte.  Only a Brit could come up with such brilliance.

Julie, Willy,  Paul, and Phil.  There Phil goes again, hamming it up for the camera.

The raucous scene at Employees Only.  Look closely and you can just make out Dave Singh’s (of Partida Tequila fame) mug. 

And what you’ve all been waiting for – the winning punch recipe that has been designated as the official cocktail of the 2008 Tales of the Cocktail:

Punch and Judy

1 oz Martell VSOP
¼ oz Old New Orleans Crystal Rum
½ oz Hendrick’s Gin
½ oz Bols Orange Curacao
2 oz Pineapple Juice
½ oz Freshly squeezed lime juice
½ oz orange juice
½ oz Partida agave nectar
2 dashes Angostura bitters
4 mint leaves

Assemble ingredients in a mixing glass with as much love and interest that is healthy (that is to say not in a obsessive fashion but certain passionate and perhaps as if you were preparing the drink for someone you respect, admire and love in a plutonic fashion) – no need to muddle the mint, just throw it in- shake properly (hard) and strain over fresh ice in a highball glass.

Cut a thinly sliced lime wheel and place on top of the Punch and Judy; add a hearty sprinkle of ground nutmeg directly on the lime wheel fresh from the “nut” with a small grater of using already ground nutmeg from a small shaker.

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