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Tales of the Toddy drink competition is Thursday, Dec. 17 at the Hyatt Regency New Orleans

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  There will be an excess of holiday spirits at Tales of the Toddy Thursday, Dec. 17, as 52 local bartenders compete in the drink competition sponsored by Tales of the Cocktail (www.talesofthecocktail.com). The 10th annual holiday event features special drinks from 26 teams, food from area restaurants and more.

  The mixologist roster includes Kimberly Patton-Bragg (Three Muses), Paul Gustings (Broussard's Empire Bar), Mark Schettler (Bar Tonique), Nick Detrich (Cane & Table), Braden LaGrone (Cure), Abigail Gullo (Compere Lapin), Chris Hannah (Arnaud's French 75), Steve Yamada (Beachbum Berry's Latitude 29), Nathan Dalton (The Catahoula) and many others. Bartenders work in pairs and made a drink using spirits they were assigned in a random drawing. They don't have to make hot drinks or nogs, but there are some of those styles of drinks.

  Matt Lofink and Michael Yusko of Bellocq created No Woman, No Nog using Hudson Manhattan Rye Whiskey, Madeira, banana cinnamon syrup, heavy cream and an egg yolk. Gusting's Making Southern Punch combines Maker's 46 bourbon, Praline Pecan liqueur, El Guapo Sweet Potato Spiced Syrup, heavy cream and cinnamon. Quetzalcoatl's Curse is Mexican hot chocolate spiked with Milagro Reposado tequila.

  The party features food from Beachbum Berry's Latitude 29, Mopho, Square Root, Electric Eggroll, Cane & Table, Creole Creamery and other restaurants.Judges will award a prize for top cocktail, and there is a costume contest and prizes for attendees, with music by the Virtuosa Quartet.

  The event is at the Hyatt Regency New Orleans from 6:30 p.m.-9:30 p.m. Tickets are $49 and VIP early admission ($75) is at 5:30 p.m. and includes free parking and a gift.

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