6:30am- "Hello Mr. Mayhew, this is your 6:30am wakeup call". Jesus, do I really set wakeup calls? Or is somebody doing this to me? I've consumed so much Grand Marnier my head is throbbing and my eyes are completely bloodshot. I've got to be downstairs for a photoshoot for a magazine by 8, and I'm really hoping Camper English will be there to share my pain.
8:05am- I'm the first one in the lobby. The art director from the magazine was smart enough to bring muffins and coffee. Rounding up 10 bartenders is like herding cats. By 8:20 the gang's all here and we drive 45 seconds down the road to some community center.
8:30am- I've done photoshoots before (ok, I've done one photoshoot in my life prior to this), and Mr. Photographer decides that a group shot is needed for the cover of this magazine. I get put crouching halfway on a rickety chair and halfway on a table, in my best Captain Morgan stance. These guys must be having some fun at my expense, and I'm starting to cramp.
8:50am- I've stretched as long as I can and they finally choose a contortionist to replace me and I get to stand in the crowd looking tough.
9:00am- Somehow, when I'm hung over, the most inappropriate songs run through my head. This and this seem to be stuck on "shuffle/repeat". I'm becoming very self concious.
10:00am- 400 cover photos later, I know understand why models and actors all smoke. They need something to do to break up the monotony.
10:30am- I finish up my individual shots and return to the hotel. I promise myself to 1) lose weight and 2) never ever do a photoshoot again. Everyone was very nice, but I'm just not enough of a peacock for this stuff.
2pm- Waiting for our van to take us to Denver, Camper regales us with tales of things inappropriate to put in a family oriented cocktail blog.
2:10-4pm- Too hung over to talk to anyone, I sleep in the van and slobber all over myself on the ride to Denver. I'm hoping no one took photos of me like that.
Some reflections on the Mixology Summit-
1) I would have preferred more interactive labs to demonstrations. I enjoy being hands on with a product, and would have appreciated an opportunity to do so with some of the best bartenders in the country.
2) Grand Marnier puts on a hell of an event. I hope I get invited back next year.
3) I would like to see more emphasis on Navan next year. I felt like Navan got treated as almost an afterthought, and its a great product with real room to grow.
In other news, the bacon bourbon I tried from Phil Ward has me inspired to do an homage to my favorite bacon in the world, the praline bacon served at the Screen Door. I'm thinking Bacon bourbon with a praline simple syrup should be mighty tasty right? I'll start this tonight. My Apothecary bitters should be done, and my Saffron-Blood Orange Bitters are going to spend about a week in the barrel to finish those off at this point. Beyond that, I don't have too much going on right now.