NOLA in NOLA

NOLA’s team has recently returned from our first team adventure in New Orleans! Everyone always tells you how fun New Orleans is… but until you finally book a flight to visit, trust us, you’re just not gonna understand!

The Crescent City has so much to offer starting from amazing french colonial architecture of the Vieux Carre (the French Quarter), to some of the worlds most unforgettable bars and restaurants.  

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If you are new to New Orleans you’ll undoubtedly visit the world famous Bourbon Street, which is a real mix of Miami’s South Beach noise, Las Vegas’ Strip and our very own Soho area of London; offering a great selection of bars, such as Arnaud’s French 75, Erin Rose, Hotel Monteleone, The Old Absinthe House and Cane & Table plus many more.

Which leads us to all the famous cocktails and unusual things like their signature boozy slushies… most of them are awful, but some like the Erin Rose Irish Iced Coffee are an absolute God-send after too many beer and the hot, humid weather. When you want to go for a walk just ask for the remainder of your drink to be put in a take away cup… what a great idea! The backdrop of live jazz on every corner and much late night naughtiness makes this a city you’ll never regret visiting. On the other hand, it is definitely worth checking out Magazine Street, this is where locals hang out and there are some pretty cool places hidden away from the crowds of tourists and 24 hour parties. 

NOLA’s team also got a chance to try some of New Orleans famous food such as jambalaya, gumbo, pit smoked BBQ and so much more at amazing places like Coops, The Bourbon House, Cochon and The Joint (over in the Bywater district). The ultimate highlight for us was that most of us got to see the Hot 8 Brass Band playing live in their home city! If you’ve never heard the Hot 8 come visit us right now and ask for us to put it on the stereo for you (or click here).

It was such a great experience to get to see, feel, touch and taste a slice of the genuine city of New Orleans!

Thank you to our amazing bosses, James and Dan, for making this happen for us all :) Until next year!!! x

The Spirited Awards

TOTC SPIRITED AWARDS 2013

TOTC SPIRITED AWARDS 2013

For all of you that aren't aware of a little something called Tales of the Cocktail (or TOTC for short) it's a New Orleans, Louisiana hosted, week-long celebration of the international cocktail bar industry. Full of interesting seminars, drink branded events and the camaraderie of over 30,000! bartenders gathered from all corners of the globe. The week closes off with the drinks industry's version of the Oscars aptly entitled, The Spirited Awards.

TOTC is so big and important to us "cocktail geeks". There's even been a documentary movie based around the experience of visiting Tales called Hey Bartender! 

The Spirited Awards are the ultimate way to become peer recognised in a variety of categories relating to "the industry" and the crystal Reidel plates that serve as the awards trophies are proudly displayed on the finest backbars in the finest bars around the world. If you enter the Connaught, Savoy or Langham hotels here in London you are certain to find them on display somewhere above the £1000+ bottles of rare spirits (yes they are THAT important). 

The Connaught Bar at the Connaught Hotel proudly displays three Spirited Awards

The Connaught Bar at the Connaught Hotel proudly displays three Spirited Awards

So with all that said it comes with a bit of shock, awe and humble surprise that our little bar has made it past all the other bars in the world, past the top 10 ten list and all the way onto the final fours "shortlist" for, Best New International Cocktail Bar in the world at this year's Spirited Awards. 

Win or lose, we can't believe that something that means so much to so many drinks enthusiasts (ourselves included) has been bestowed upon our own little version of the Crescent City. Please wish us luck as we attend the awards in person this July in New Orleans and feel free to stop down to NOLA to cheers us and all the other deserving bars, writers and bartenders on at this years TOTC Spirited Awards.

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