Jul 05, 2016

Tales of the Cocktail® Welcomes Team from Havana’s Legendary El Floridita


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Kandyse Aube, July 5, 2016 – Tales of the Cocktail® is proud to announce that a team from the storied Havana bar El Floridita will be joining this year’s festivities, the first time all four will be a part of Tales of the Cocktail®. The group will be led by Julio Cabrera, Global Brand Ambassador for El Floridita, and he will be joined by the international bar team of Director and General Manager Ariel Blanco and bartenders Alejandro Bolivar, Nicolai Mesa and Manuel Carbajo. The team will be honored at special ceremony during the Toast to Tales.

“This has been long over due. I almost feel like Tales of the Cocktail hasn’t been complete without El Floridita being a part of it,” said Ann Tuennerman, Founder of Tales of the Cocktail®. “It obviously wasn’t easy to get them here but we are so happy that we were able to welcome them to New Orleans for this year’s festivities.”

El Floridita’s international bar team of Bolivar, Mesa and Carbajo combines close to 75 years of experience serving the bar’s legendary daiquiris and other cocktails. Alejandro Boliva has 23 years of experience at El Flordita and is known as one of Cuba’s most highly regarded bartenders, or Cantineros, of the past 50 years. With 25 years behind the bar, Mesa has served hundreds of celebrities throughout his career. And Carbajo is one of the most awarded Cuban bartenders, having won an award at practically every cocktail competition in Cuba starting from the late 1990’s through the early 2000’s as well being the first Cuban to win an international cocktail competition.

“They are the most genuine representation of Cuban Cantineros in the world,” said Cabera on the international bar team. “It’s their first time at Tales as one of the best international bar teams.”

El Flordita opened in 1817 as La Piña de Plata at the same location where the bar still resides on the corner of Obispo and Monserrate streets just blocks from El Capitolio. The bar grew in international fame behind the work of Constantino Ribalaigua Vert who turned the bar into a daiquiri destination and invented the Frozen Daiquiri in the 1930s. Throughout the years it has become a draw for celebrities around the world, most notably Ernest Hemingway who famously requested his daiquiri with no sugar and double the rum, a drink that would become Papa Doble or The Hemingway Special.

All Tales of the Cocktail® attendees are encouraged to attend The Toast to Tales® on Wednesday, July 20 at 2 pm in front of the Hotel Monteleone to kick off Tales of the Cocktail 2016® with a series of special announcements. For more information about The Toast to Tales® or the more than 200 other events at Tales of the Cocktail 2016®, visit TalesoftheCocktail.com.

About Tales of the Cocktail®

Founded in 2002, Tales of the Cocktail® has grown from a small gathering of cocktail lovers into the world’s premier cocktail festival. Each year the international spirits industry is welcomed to New Orleans for a week of seminars, tastings, networking events and much more. With 200+ annual events developed specifically for bartenders, distillers and other spirits professionals, Tales of the Cocktail® is the industry’s annual meeting place for the exchange of new ideas, products and techniques.
Tales of the Cocktail® also produces a number of other events and programs such as Tales of the Cocktail® on Tour, Tales 365®, Tales of the Toddy® and New Orleans Daiquiri Month, all to further the mission of supporting and growing the international cocktail community.

About the New Orleans Culinary & Cultural Preservation Society

Tales of the Cocktail® is produced by the New Orleans Culinary & Cultural Preservation Society (NOCCPS), a non-profit organization committed to supporting, promoting and growing the cocktail industry in New Orleans and around the world. In addition to offering opportunities to learn and acquire new skills through Tales of the Cocktail® events and Tales 365®, the NOCCPS invests the proceeds back into the spirits industry. Since 2008, the NOCCPS has invested more than $600,000 into programs like the Cocktail Apprentice Program, a tuition reimbursement program, the Apprentice medical aid fund, educational scholarships and a new health and wellness program for members of the hospitality industry.