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On this week’s NOLADrinks podcast, we talk rum, tiki cocktails, and go all the way back to the 18th century in the US! We also talk Pinot Noir from the Willamette Valley of Oregon, sparkling wine, and more!

Pictured Above – Bryan Dias of NOLADrinks (left), Konrad Kantor of El Libre (center), and Alex Anderson of Cane & Table (right).

NOLADrinks Show Summary – Rum, Tiki Cocktails, Wine, and More!

In the first hour we cover some things to do in New Orleans in the coming days. We then talk about the 2016 wine harvest – the good and the bad. A recent report indicated that the global harvest will be down 5% with the Southern Hemisphere, namely Chile, Argentina, and South Africa, bearing the brunt. All of this due to “climatic events.” Some good news is that the 2016 harvest in California, though down in yields as well, looks fantastic from a quality standpoint. Even recent rains in the central and northern parts of the state, did little to dent the outlook. Much of the winegrape harvest was already complete and that which was still hanging on the vine, received little or no damage as the environment dried and warmed quickly.

NOLADrinks then welcomes Leora Madden of Pearl Wine Co., located in the Mid-City neighborhood of New Orleans. We discuss Oregon Pinot Noir and how the terroir and experience of the region have led to success with the grape (along with Pinot Gris/Grigio, too!) We also touch on California Pinot during the segment.

Secondly, we talk about “bubbles” – sparkling wine with Leora! We touch on labeling considerations, what makes “Champagne” Champagne, and how sometimes folks get confused by the broader world of sparkling wines. These two preceding topics tie-in to this week’s regular, free tastings at Pearl Wine Co. that take place each Thursday and Friday evening at the shop.


In the second hour, we have our “At the Bar” segment. We host Alex Anderson of Cane & Table and Konrad Kantor of El Libre. Both establishments are located in the French Quarter of New Orleans and boast a great breadth of cocktail knowledge. El Libre is a Cuban Café, that along with food, offers a smart list of traditional Cuban and Cuban-inspired cocktails (think “Hemingway” for starters!) Cane & Table’s primary theme is “Proto-Tiki” cocktails with an emphasis on rum – though the offer much more. The establishment and its staff are well-versed in the history and traditions of cocktails and beverages (well beyond Proto-Tiki and Tiki cocktails) in the US and around the world.

During the chat, we go as far back as 1750 with a drink recipe created or credited to Benjamin Franklin. We talk about beverages inspired by the American Revolution era currently informing some of Cane & Table’s drink list these days. We move forward, to a degree, through the 19th century and the development of the “cocktail,” on to Proto-Tiki, and then conclude with a discussion of the background and advent of Tiki cocktails and culture.

Special note – we celebrate Alex’s birthday with a taste of two Havana Club rums while we chat! You can check out, download, and subscribe to the podcast below the map which shows the establishments from the show. Cheers, You All!