Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Riding the Carousel

The Monteleone Hotel was rather overwhelmed by the multitude of TOTC visitors that descended upon Royal Street mid-afternoon Wednesday. As a result, my room was not immediately ready. So I checked my bags and headed toward the hotel's Carousel Bar.

It was spining right on schedule, with a few midday drinkers in for the ride. (The circular bar slowly rotates, completing a turn round the room every 15 minutes.) Last year, I began my stay at TOTC here by ordering a Sazerac—an appropriate gesture, I thought. I followed it with a Hurricane. Both were spectacular.

I thought this year I'd begin with another New Orleans favorite, a Ramos Gin Fizz. No dice. "We're out of eggs," said the bartender. So I went with my old standby, the Sazerac. He made it in a flash, with a plentitude of shaking. I don't know what it is, but Sazeracs just taste better in New Orleans than they do in New York. Yummier, not as sharp. Maybe it's because we're so near the source of Sazerac House rye. Maybe they use a little more Herbsaint, being fond of their local liquors. Whatever it is, it goes down mighty smooth.

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