Surviving an All-Day Cocktail Event

MCC2012Saturday was my first day at the Manhattan Cocktail Classic. The event began Friday night with the gala at the New York Public Library, but I didn’t get to go — I heard about from all the people I met. Everything I experienced was at the Andaz Hotel on 5th Avenue and 42nd Street.

This was not my first all-day cocktail event — I’ve attended the Indie Spirits Expo the previous two years, but that’s more of just a tasting of everything. I more of less knew what to expect from the Industry Invitational, but I was still pleasantly surprised.

There was some terrific food — all made with Angostora Bitters. And I certainly should’ve eaten more early on because it wasn’t easy to fill up later in the day with everyone trying to fill their stomachs.

Exploration Cocktail
The Exploration Cocktail by bartender Ryan Maybee

Don’t get too drunk

When attending a 12-hour drinking event, it’s important to remember to pace yourself — it’s a marathon that requires a high tolerance and some planning. I broke up the spirits tastings to ensure I wouldn’t consume too much liquor at one time. And each cocktail served was consumed slowly and rarely finished — I wanted to get the taste, not the drunkenness.

ambassador rum
14-year-old Venezuelan rum

If you’re drinking alcohol, also drink water

It’s also wise to take advantage of the free bottles of water to cleanse the palate and stay hydrated. This is also helpful in preventing a horrible hangover the next day. The coffee station is also helpful for staying awake while sampling all those cocktails.

Proper footwear is needed

The most important piece of advice for such a day is to wear comfortable shoes because there aren’t a lot of places to sit and you’re walking or standing around all day. I didn’t follow this advice for the first day and my feet hurt. For round two today, I will wear my extra-comfortable hiking shoes.

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