After my two week adventure in the States, I’m back! Or rather, I got back last Sunday but thanks to exhaustion, heavy work-loads when I returned to my day job, and no small amount of sheer laziness I haven’t managed to find time to post until now. I don’t think I’ve ever been so exhausted. Nor do I think I’ve ever drank quite so much – not that I was wasted the whole time I was there, ahem, but rather I’ve never continually drank, day-in day-out, quite like I did during my two weeks in America.
Not that I’m complaining you understand. I had an amazing time. It was hard not to. From the second I woke up, to the hazy recollection of stumbling in to my hotel room early the next morning, Tales of the Cocktail was a blast! And that’s not just my opinion – see what everyone else thought over at the Tales Blog and at this months Mixology Monday which I stupidly managed to miss.
Highlights for me? Well that’s hard to say really. Events wise, the Juniperlooza, Bitters, History of Liqueurs, Charles Baker and Drinks of New Orleans sessions really stand out in my mind as my favourites. From the rare ingredients of the Bitters and Liqueurs sessions and the 10 gins of Juniperlooza, to seeing Chris McMillian make a Mint Julep in Drinks of New Orleans and hearing of the crazy exploits of Charles Baker from St. John Frizell, they were all interesting, fun and rewarding.
Even better than the sessions, I loved finally getting the chance to meet so many people I’ve read and emailed over the past few years – from the guy that helped all us bloggers get here to the guy that brought me home-made ingredients to take home, plus some Annie Hall obsessed weirdo and plenty of others too, everyone was amazingly friendly and great people to spend time with. I also met lots of new people including other cocktail writers, famous bartenders, cocktail illuminati and even a few people who weren’t in New Orleans for Tales but got caught up in the hubbub anyway. What must they have thought?
Of course the other highlight for me, unrelated to New Orleans, was getting the chance to try out some of New York’s finer drinking establishments. I drank some really delicious cocktails at some amazing bars, so expect to read more about these in the next few weeks as I slowly trawl through my notes and memory. You can also expect to read more about New Orleans and Tales of the Cocktail, including my favourite drinks and bars from New Orleans, and some more about the sessions I attended.
For now though, on to the small matter of who won my bitters give-away, held to celebrate the launch of the brand new design for Oh Gosh!. An impressive 80 people commented on Oh Gosh! during the competition, and I am pleased to announce that the winner of the Hermes Orange bitters, Hermes Aromatic bitters, The Bitter Truth Celery bitters and The Bitter Truth Jerry Thomas’ Own Decanter bitters is…
Congratulations Kelly and thank you to everyone else that entered the competition. The new design seems to have gone down well, and I appreciate all the feedback and comments. Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to get some more sleep. Here’s to Tales of the Cocktail 2009!
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