The weather outside is not quite frightful, but that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy a hot, holiday drink or two… or a dozen. On Thursday (12.17), 52 of NOLA’s top bartenders will serve up thousands of sample seasonal cocktails at the tenth annual Tales of the Toddy. NoDef spoke with USBG New Orleans President Mark Schettler to learn a bit about the backstory behind the bottles.
The event features a virtual “Who’s Who” of craft cocktail creators. Schettler joked, “We should probably start treating it like the State of the Union and requiring at least one marquee name bartender to stay home. If something tragic were to happen at Toddy, you'd all be stuck drinking vodka-sodas and shaken Sazeracs when you go out this weekend.”
The emphasis is on fun at Toddy. Unlike the industry and trade oriented event that populate much of the remainder of the year, the evening is more about gratification than education and the crowd is primarily local. Schettler adds, “During Tales of the Cocktail in July, all of us are on overdrive for the entire week. I think a requirement of Tales of the Toddy participation could be ‘No bartenders allowed who got 8 hours of sleep (on purpose) in one night during Tales of the Cocktail.’ So it's nice for all of us to get together in a more festive, honestly less stressful environment and just do something for each other and for our city alone.”
Of course, there are prizes. Winners are picked in cocktail and costume contests by both judges and the audience. Schettler all be teaming up with Kimberly Patton-Bragg to serve up a "Maestro & Servant.” He describes the creation as a Bacardi Ron de Maestro based spicy remix of a Pina Colada (with some crazy garnishes). However, the team added that their real goal (like any food New Orleanian) is the costume contest prize. With the team’s risqué theme, “Twas the night before XXX-mas,” the outfits promise to present some eye candy.
If you can’t wait until tonight for a drink, Schettler offered a couple recipes to check out at home.
Maestro & Servant recipe:
- 1.5 oz Bacardi Ron de Maestro
- 1.5 oz Coco Lopez
- 1 oz Pineapple Juice (unsweetened)
- 1 oz Ancho Reyes
- .5 oz Lime Juice
- .25 oz Honey syrup (1 part honey, 1 part water)
- 1 Scoop of ice
Blend and pour. Garnish it with something freaky, call it a dirty name and serve.
- 1.5 oz Bourbon or Rye
- .75 oz Fresh Lemon Juice
- .5 oz Honey Syrup (2 parts honey, 1 part water)
- And I forgot one thing in that toddy recipe!
- (Optional) .25 oz Allspice Dram
Top with hot water
Garnish with a clove studded lemon peel