Disaronno & Tia Maria Dinner with Marcel Vigneron and Love Boat’s Issac

Ted Lange, the actor who played Issac, the bartender, on TV’s Love Boat

As part of the Tales of the Cocktail spirited dinners, I attended one with Disaronno and Tia Maria at the Musee Conti Wax Museum. I replied immediately I was in when I saw the guest was Ted Lange from TV’s Love Boat show and Top Chef Marcel Vigneron was cooking

Disaronno through the ages

We had an opportunity to wander through the New Orleans Wax Museum (Musee Conti) and I thought it was pretty funny to play “spot the Disaronno.” Here are a couple of my favorites or check out my complete flickr set of photos.

this was particularly funny to me at the Musee Conti Wax Museum

Who says you shouldn’t drink in the tub? At least I think that’s a tub. Maybe it’s a sled.

Lindsay Nader

LA bartender Lindsay Nader served her Cantaloupe Island with the passed appetizers of endive boats, oysters and sea water potatoes with lemon and dill . She later demonstrated her drink to the dinner crowd. The cocktail is made with Disaronno, Barcadi Superior rum, Yellow Chartreuse, cantaloupe juice, lemon and was garnished with a slice of cantaloupe and chamomile.

Lindsay Nader – Cantaloupe Island

I really liked this drink and not because Lindsay is from LA! It was light and refreshing. I probably could have had 3 of these easily but there were more drinks to try.

The Love Boat

I loved that Ted Lange aka Issac talked about working on the Love Boat show. He had never bartended before he got the part. He mentioned he looked a bit clumsy on the first season so he went to bartending school. He also talked to the bartenders at his local bar about things like what sort of shoes to wear. He got a comfortable pair but had some logo that the show didn’t want seen. He ended up having to get those painted over. He told many funny stories and I love him even more. Talk about a hot bartender.

Willy Shine

Willy Shine from New York presented his Apertivo Squisito with the salad course. I loved the video he did with Domenic Venegas for the Tales of the Cocktail Spirit Awards. They did the video to introduce the high volume category (which Eastern Standard in Boston won).

Willy Shine – Aperitivo Squisito

The Aperitivo Squisito (Disaronno, Appleton reserve rum, lemon, pomegranate agave syrup, Pernod Absinthe, sparkling wine) continued to rev up our appetite. The sparkling wine went well with the light salad.

melon & tomato salad

Chef Marcel gave us the melon and tomato salad which sounded simple with feta cheese, brown butter croutons and a tarragon vinaigrette but it was absolutely amazing plating. It was very artful and welcome in the humidity and heat.

Marcel Vigneron with Issac

Chef Marcel would come out with each course to describe the dishes.

Julio Cabrera

A few months ago, I attended Disaronno’s Mixing Start regional competition in L.A. The finals were held in Las Vegas and Miami bartender Julio Cabrera won first place.

Julio Cabrera – Pear-fecta Vita

Julio made us his winning cocktail, the Pear-fecta Vita for our soup course. The drink is composed of Disaronno, Remy Martin VSOP cognac, pear, lemon and Herbs de Provence syrup.

chilled pea soup

Chef Marcel gave us the chilled pea soup with vanilla and citrus cured salmon, cucumber and radish. It was great presentation and my favorite course.

Josh Pearson

Chicago bartender Josh Pearson paired his Pacific Cutter (Tia Maria, Disaronno, Illegal Mezcal, Lillet Blanc, Elamakule bitters) with the last course, the braised short ribs.

Josh Pearson – Pacific Cutter

The Pacific Cutter is a stirred drink. It is a bold drink that stood up to the meaty short ribs and sauce.

braised short ribs

The short ribs were very tender. The sauce was lightened for summer with a tomato sofrito and gremolata.

Marcel with his dessert cocktail

I didn’t stay for the after-party with food trucks bringing dessert but that doesn’t mean I didn’t get something sweet. Marcel was making Dragon’s Breath, his frozen treats (similar to this one) and wowing the crowd. I almost thought he was making his frozen cocktail similar to this one from this brunch at the Coop (which opens officially next week). But no, it was his puffed wild rice crispy with salted caramel. When you bite into it, you release the liquid nitrogen and a “dragon’s breath.”

LA Bartender Giovanni Martinez giving us his best ‘stache

I lingered with to chat with L.A. bartender Giovanni Martinez of Sadie Restaurant. How could you not when he was sporting the ‘stache a la Issac?

SF bartender Danny Ronen with his Tia Maria drinks

To-go cups are popular in New Orleans but I thought the old fashioned shot works best. SF bartender Danny Ronen went the snazzy Issac route with his colorful jacket. He served the Cabin Fever (Disaronno, Fernet Branca, sweet vermouth, chili-infused grappa). Bottoms up and salud!


Disaronno Mixing Star – LA Regional Competition
Tia Maria

Musee Conti – New Orleans Wax Museum

Chef Marcel Vigeneron

Tales of the Cocktail

© The Minty 2012