Friday, December 28, 2018

Best of Lounge - 2018

Fredo Ceraso is this year's Lounger Number 1 despite his ardent protests.
He humbly accepted the award at the Loungerati Staff Beefsteak Dinner held on Repeal Weekend in NYC.

Wow! 2018 done already? What happened? It was a blur and we are looking forward to the last year of the "teens". Loungerati's 2018 Best of Lounge Awards go to:

Lounge Scene Awards 

Best Burlesque Act or Performer*: Francine The Lucid Dream's Pink Room Burlesque, NYC
Honorable Mention: Gin Minsky, Miss Puss-n-Boots, Gal Friday, Glitter Gutter at Slipper Room

Francine The Lucid Dream & Friends
* Editor's Note: We could probably list dozens of terrific shows, performances, and acts that Francine was involved with this year - it is truly remarkable. We are convinced she must have doppelgangers to do it all and wish her best of luck with her nomination for Broadway World Cabaret Awards Best Burlesque Show!! 
Diane L. Naegel Award for Best Lounge or Vintage Event: Don Spiro's Green Fairy at the Red Room  
Honorable Mention: Dances of Vice - Great Gatsby Party, The Easter Parade, Loungerati Beefsteak Dinner

Viva La Musica Award for Best Jazz, Lounge, or Swing Band: The Glenn Crytzer Orchestra
Honorable Mention: Brian Newman, Dandy Wellington & His Band, Michael Arenella's Dreamland Orchestra

Glenn Crytzer
Most Sought After Ingredient or Bar Tool for the Home Bar: Nikka Coffey Gin
Honorable Mention: Bigallet 'China-China' Amer, I Just Came for the Drinks by Sother TeagueOld Overholt Bonded Rye

Best Dressed LoungerAshton "Dandy Dillinger" Warren 
Honorable Mention: Eff "Occhi Azzurri" Blangiardo, Brian "Showboat" Newman, Lesley "Jee-Jee" Martin

Dandy Dillinger with Don Spiro of Green Fairy

Cocktail Bars and Lounges
Best New Cocktail Bar or Lounge: Tie: Katana Kitten (West Village) & Osamil (Midtown)
Honorable mention: The Polynesian (Times Square), Gibson & Luce (Midtown), George Washington Bar at Freehand Hotel (Gramercy)

Ben Rojo of GW Bar & Jelo of Osamil at Osamil
Best New York Cocktail Bar or LoungeDante (Greenwich Village)
Honorable Mention: Long Island Bar (Cobble Hill), The Dead Rabbit (FIDI), Clover Club (Boerum Hill), Dear Irving (Union Square)

Best Barfood: Korean Fried Chicken at Osamil (Midtown) 
Honorable Mention: Deviled Eggs at Ward III (Tribeca), Steak Tartare at Employees Only (West Village), Katsu Sando at Bar Moga (Greenwich Village)

Best of the New York Hotel Bars: Rum House at Hotel Edison(Times Square)
Honorable Mention: Lantern's Keep at the Iroquois (Times Square), Nomad at Nomad Hotel (Midtown), Gin Parlour at Intercontinental Hotel (Midtown)

Best Cocktail of 2018The Calpico Swizzle (Bombay Sapphire East, Nigori Sake, Calpico, lime, sansho pepper, blanc de blanc)at Katana Kitten (West Village)
Honorable Mention: K-Town Sidecar at Osamil (Midtown), Commodore Perry Cooler at George Washington Bar(Gramercy), Permanent Vacation at Grand Banks (Tribeca)

Calpico Swizzle at Katana Kitten
Editors and Staff Picks:

Best Seat in the HouseDug Out seat at Ward III (Tribeca)
Honorable mention: Snug booth at Dead Rabbit's refurbished Tap Room, the seat farthest from Phil Ward in Long Island Bar or Rockwell Place, & F14 at Clover Club of course when in Brooklyn (natch!)
Affinity Cocktail with Harleston Green Blended Scotch and
Deviled Eggs in the Dug Out Seat at Ward III

Best Cocktail for the Road**
: Army & Navy Cocktail (London Dry Gin, Lemon, Housemande Orgeat) at Flatiron Lounge (Chelsea)
Honorable Mention: Irish Coffee at Dead Rabbit (FiDi), Ichi-mas Boilermaker (Sapporo lager & Toki Japanese Whiskey) at Katana Kitten (West Village), The Derelict (rums, bourbon, banana, cinnamon, passion fruit, absinthe and juices) at Polynesian (Midtown West)

Army & Navy Cocktail at Flatiron Lounge (RIP)
**Editor's Note: The last cocktail we ordered at Flatiron Lounge the week before it closed was the classic Army & Navy. What a way to say good-bye to a cocktail stalwart!

Best Saloon: Hanks Saloon (Boerum Hill) 
Honorable Mention: Hudson Malone (Midtown East), American Whiskey (Midtown), The Gaf West (Hell's Kitchen)
Best NY Tiki Experience: Exotica Night at Raines Law Room (Midtown)
Honorable Mention: The Polynesian (Midtown West), Sunken Harbor at Ft Defiance (Red Hook), Cellar 335 (Jersey City)

Best of the InternationalsEl Pequeno Bar (Montreal)
Honorable Mention: American Bar at Savoy Hotel (London), Fifty Mils (Mexico D.F.)

*NEW* Best American Cocktail Bar (ex-NYC) Visited in 2018: Water Witch (SLC)
Honorable Mention: Rosina (Las Vegas), Lost Lake (Chicago), Sweet Liberty Drinks & Supply Co. (Miami)
Best Dive aka "The Gutter Award"Hanks Saloon (Boerum Hill)
Honorable Mention: Jimmy's Corner (Times Square), Nancy Whiskey Pub (Tribeca), Tracks in Penn Station (Midtown) 

Was lucky enough to have a last drink served by
veteran bartender Jeannie Talierico. Thanks for the memories!  
Brian F. Paynter Award for Lounger Number One: Fredo "Don't Give Me this Award" Ceraso 
Honorable mention: David "GOH" Talaga, Joe "The Leisure Master" Desmond, Don "Mr. Absinthe" Spiro

Lastly, the New York cocktail bar scene lost too many of our favorite watering holes this past year. Flatiron Lounge, Julie Reiner's pioneering cocktail bar served its last drink after almost 15 years, Hanks Saloon, the iconic downtown Brooklyn dive bar shuttered, as did relative new comers Suffolk Arms. We will miss these joints and fondly remember the good times, friendships made, and hospitality.

Til' the next Manhattans!

- The Loungerati

Happy New Year!

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