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On this edition of the NOLADrinks Show with Bryan Dias we have not one, but two New Orleans Bartenders of the Year! We chat with Kimberly Patton-Bragg of Latitude 29 and Renea Pellegrino of Mimi’s in the Marigny. We also talk about a few events as we kick-off Carnival Season, some restaurant and hospitality industry news, and more!

Pictured above from left – Bryan Dias of NOLADrinks, Kimberly Patton-Bragg of Latitude 29, and Renea Pellegrino of Mimi’s in the Marigny.

NOLADrinks – 1-4-18 – Two Bartenders of the Year

We start off our first show of 2018 talking about how, in New Orleans, we roll straight from the holiday season into Carnival Season, which kicks-off this weekend. It’s also a special year, as we’ll be celebrating the tricentennial of the city in 2018! We mention some events, including three parades that get things going on Saturday.

In our second segment, we discuss some happenings and thoughts on the restaurant and hospitality industry. This includes news that the New Orleans Culinary and Hospitality Institute (NOCHI), in concert with Tulane University and others, will be opening a new facility in January 2019 to help develop professionals in the culinary arts and hospitality fields.

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We then move to our featured interview with guests Renea Pellegrino of Mimi’s in the Marigny (where we taped this portion of the show – thanks to Mimi’s for that!) and Kimberly Patton-Bragg of Beachbum Berry’s Latitude 29. Both were recognized as 2017 bartenders of the year – Kim by New Orleans Magazine and Renea by Where Y’At magazine.

It’s a great chat where we cover their backgrounds, cocktails, being two talented and accomplished women in the industry, and much more! We discuss their approaches to making drinks, handling guests, and some of the challenges they have faced being females in the business. Of course, we have a lot of laughs, too!

We close things out talking about another fun event taking place this weekend – the First Annual New Orleans Tamale Festival happening at Poor Boys Bar. Lastly, we share a couple news items including the theft of the “world’s most expensive bottle of Vodka.”

Below the map that shows the locations of Mimi’s and Latitude 29, you can subscribe to, stream, and download the NOLADrinks Show with Bryan Dias podcast.

Cheers and Happy New Year, You All!

~ Bryan