• brandenfugate

Road Notes: Day 117


We spent the morning on the phone/web arguing with Verizon (while Lauren is on the phone I usually take to twitter to harass their customer service account). Really really really hate that company but as full-time travelers who need regular web access we really don’t have many other options (we also have AT&T and T-Mobile but Verizon rules the woods and we camp a lot). They are seriously close to turning Rotten Journal into a snail mail newsletter though.

Once that was through we decided we needed a drink so we headed for the nearest drive-thru daiquiri establishment (we didn’t have to drive long, they’re everywhere) and got a small “demon” that we definitely didn’t sip while driving because that’s illegal. Somehow though it was nearly gone by the time we reached our destination.

St. Louis Cemetery #1 is very old and very famous but they charge $20 per person to visit! St. Louis Cemetery #2 is nearly as old and only slightly less famous and it’s free (and not nearly as crowded with living people with cameras). We went #2 (lolz) and it was absolutely beautiful.

We then headed to the Museum of the American Cocktail. After purchasing our tickets we were told that if we wanted a drink there was an attached restaurant and bar and that we could carry our drinks around the gallery. We obliged and, needing a pick-us-up, ordered two Irish coffees. It is now 4pm, we have not eaten but have had drinks twice. The museum was fantastic. Bar napkins are really a lost art.

On our way out we had a conversation with the young lady at the front dest of the Southern Food and Beverage Museum where MOTAC is held. She gave us a list of recommendations where we might have our first meal of the day. We settled on a hole-in-the-wall in the Irish Channel called Parasol’s (which, incidentally, actually has a hole in the wall that connects the next-door bar so you can order a drink) due almost entirely to her description of the Irish Sundae served there (potato salad topped with roast beef debris and spicy horseradish). We also got a “firecracker” shrimp po boy which, even sharing, we were unable to finish.

We then hobbled back to our truck and drove to a local coffee chop called HiVolt (really cool place—fantastic music) to grab a fix before we went into food comas.

Once we were properly caffeinated we headed to the Roosevelt Hotel to visit the historic Sazerac Bar. We had bumped into Hadi, one of the bartenders there earlier in the week at Tujaques (he was also there for Paul Gustings first night back) and we were happy to see him behind the bar. He made us a Sazerac and a Ramos and, despite being somewhat busy, gave us some great recommendations for where to spend the rest of the night.

We then headed to Black Penny, a new-ish spot started by a couple veterans from Erin Rose, the legendary industry dive in the French Quarter. A few minutes after arriving we struck up a conversation with a fellow patron who happened to be a wine distributer. Soon enough we were taking several bottles off his hands (out of the back of his Subaru) and making plans to meet him the following day at a Cognac tasting he was hosting at 21st Amendment (we stayed out kinda late though so we’ll see how we feel in the morning—damn thing’s at noon).

Next was Lafitte’s Blacksmith Shop Bar, the oldest bar in the country, where we shared a cognac. It’s a dive now, a particularly rowdy one with a piano, but the history of the place is immediately apparent.

We then headed to Cane and Table, a hip “proto-tiki” spot that we had heard/read a lot about. Truth be told we were a little apprehensive. Trendy cocktail bars have been sprouting like weeds these last few years and they’re all too often dreadfully formulaic (yes, PDT was cool—move on). This place was refreshingly different - from the decor to the service to the incredibly well made cocktails that not only reference tiki but also the Caribbean libations that (loosely) inspired the movement in the first place. A fantastic way to end the night. The housemade “Pimm’s #4” was truly—and unexpectedly—a revelation (we ordered it, begrudgingly, only on the advice of our bartender). Bravo. Bravo. Bravo.

Branden

Road Notes are timed entries—written in thirty minutes or less at the end of each day.


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