- The Scout Guide -

Windsor Court’s Royal Past

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As New Orleans launches into a week celebrating all things royal, TSG would like to pay special tribute to a local business with a royal past that is celebrating 31 years of business this week. On February 12th, 1984, the Windsor Court opened its doors making it our city’s most gracious locally-owned, luxury hotel.

Windsor Court’s history began as the vision of James J. Coleman, Jr., a New Orleans entrepreneur and Anglophile. Mr. Coleman thought a location just north of the French Quarter was the very place to build a grand hotel inspired by England’s Windsor Castle, complete with classic art and high tea. He was right.

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When Mr. Coleman’s masterpiece debuted in 1984, Princess Anne traveled to our city to greet the attendees. It was certainly a grand opening as Ginger Rogers took to the dance floor of La Chinoiserie and George Burns smoked the first cigar ever lit in the Polo Club Lounge.

Our city’s history of hospitality is steeped in royalty. The Grand Duke Alexis traveled to New Orleans in 1872 and his visit formalized Mardi Gras. Over the years, Carnival and the Windsor Court have evolved into two of New Orleans’ crown jewels, and New Orleanians have royalty to thank (and the locals dedicated to their preservation) for leaving these precious gems behind to offer great enjoyment for many years to follow.

The Windsor Court invites you to celebrate all things royal with an exclusive TSG offer for overnight accommodations for Mardi Gras. Whether you are venturing to the French Quarter for one more day of indulgence or to see the meeting of the Courts, consider staying over night at the hotel. It will make the commute to work much shorter or the transition to fasting more enjoyable when you wake in this splendor. Book your reservation here.

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Windsor Court

300 Gravier Street

New Orleans, LA 70130

TELL THEM SCOUT SENT YOU!

– TAYLOR

Feb
10
2015

Nathan Dalton on the Origins of Tiki Tolteca

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Dreaming of a Getaway? Look no further than Tiki Tolteca in the French Quarter. Situated on Decatur at the corner of Bienville, this is the cornerstone to what has now become Tiki Row. This bar has been an underground concept for quite some time, but it was this past summer that the owners of Felipe’s decided to make it an official destination. In its short history, Tiki Tolteca has been named The People’s Best New Bar by Food & Wine Magazine, Top 10 Tiki Bars in the Country by USA Today, and included in Thrillist’s 21 best new bars in America. Tiki Tolteca should be visited if you’re looking for an adventure, if you need a venue for your next party, if you appreciate the art of cocktails, or need an escape from reality.

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TSG asked Nathan Dalton (pictured above center) to enlighten us on the concept of Tiki Tolteca. Read on to learn more about Tiki bars and their direct association with our city.

MAKING IT OFFICIAL

ND: The concept for Tiki Tolteca was a marriage between bartender Richard Odell’s fanaticism for all things tiki and my passion for Latin American drinks and culture. It started out as a 2-night-a-week bar in the upstairs room of the French Quarter Felipe’s – kind of like a bar hidden in someone’s attic. As the idea caught on, soon we were doing six days a week. Then, in July, 2014, Rob Stumm, the owner of Felipe’s and an architect, redesigned the entire space to turn it from an attic bar into a real Tiki Bar. We redid the menu with drawings of the drinks and introduced some off-the-wall components like tiki gummies and mouth-numbing flowers.  People seem to like what we’ve done.

Tiki Drinks

HISTORY OF TIKI BARS

ND: Tiki is the idea of using atmosphere, food, drinks, and attitude to transport someone from a non-Polynesian paradise to a Polynesian paradise.  The concept is actually an American creation from someone named Donn Beach who was either from New Orleans or spent a lot of time here as a youngster. His first bar was Don the Beachcombers in Hollywood in the early 1930s, right after Prohibition. A tropical paradise in a concrete jungle. The idea caught on, obviously, and almost 100 years later we can find Tiki Bars throughout the world.

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FRESH INGREDIENTS AND HOMEMADE LIQUORS

ND: We make everything that we possibly can. We make our own syrups, cordials, bitters, ginger beer, edible cocktails, and fresh squeeze our juice. Each shift requires three hours of prep time in addition to two full prep shifts per week. More than anything I have ever been a part of, it really is a labor of love, and the emphasis is on “labor.”

Mezcal In the Making

EDUCATIONAL DINNERS

Tiki Tolteca also offers seasonal, educational dinners. In December, we hosted a Mezcal dinner. What is Mezcal? Mezcal, colloquially, is any spirit made from an agave plant. Legally, there are more restrictions than that, having to come from certain areas of Mexico and made using certain methods of production. But for the average drinker, what matters is that Mezcal is the smokey, fruity, big, bold grandfather of Tequila. We paired Mezcal shots and concoctions with a true Oaxacan menu, the hometown of Mezcal. Felipe’s brother Hignio has been at the helm of Felipe’s since it first opened in 2006. He is originally from Oaxaca, Mexico, so it was easy for him to craft a traditional menu. The menu included chocolate con pan (bread and chocolate to begin every meal), Chapulines y gusanos (grasshoppers and worms), ensalada de no pales (cactus salad), chicken enchiladas with red mole, short ribs with black mole, and dulce calabaza (sweet pumpkin). The menu, including the insects, was well received! Our next dinner will likely feature Pisco and we will be sure to let TSG know the date as soon as we set it!

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Editor’s Note: I was there and ate everything including the grasshoppers and worms! YOLO. Nathan Dalton is so passionate about all he does that I would encourage you to attend the next dinner.

In true TSG form, Tiki Tolteca’s design is a collaboration of members of The Scout Guide network. Rob Stumm was the architect, Shaun Smith oversaw the interior design, Katie Koch made the blackout curtains for the bar, and Sara Essex Bradley served as the photographer. You know I love me some networking within the network. Call Tiki Tolteca today to reserve the space for your next corporate or private event…or stop by and scout it out on one of your many jaunts to the French Quarter over the next two weeks.

Tiki Tolteca

301 N. Peters

Second Floor

New Orleans, LA 70130

504-267-4406

olga@felipesnola.com

TELL THEM SCOUT SENT YOU!

– TAYLOR

Feb
5
2015

Will You Be My Valentine?

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Our small businesses need some love! Everyone has been hibernating since Christmas, and the Valentine’s boost they normally experience conflicts with Mardi Gras. We hope you will embrace the holiday because 1) there is so much creative goodness by local artisans that its hard to resist and 2) you do not need a man to celebrate this day! You can show anyone who is special in your life that you care about them with one of these unique finds. Plan ahead so you can spoil your loved ones and then dance in the street to Hey Pockey Way on February 14th!

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14K Rose Gold Diamond Hoop Earrings | FRIEND & CO. – Love at first sight. Designed by Ken Friend, they provide an elegant, yet simple, wow factor.

Reservations | BALISE - Balise, a new restaurant by Chef Justin and Mia Devillier of La Petite Grocery, opens today! If you can score reservations at the city’s hottest new restaurant, your Valentine is sure to thank you.

Heart Soap Dish | ECLECTIC HOME – This gift is suitable for any Valentine on your list…be it your mother, grandmother, or a co-worker to show you care. Loomed NOLA has great homemade soaps made by the owner’s mother to pair with it.

Makeup Consultation | TISA BEAUTY BAR – I stopped by Tisa Beauty Bar yesterday to pick up my under eye concealer to discover an entire revamp of my favorite makeup line. Isaac Mizrahi has aesthetically transformed the beloved Being True. This is the best mineral makeup in the industry, so he didn’t touch the formulas, rather he just made the packaging a bit more fun! Tisa swears by this makeup and says, “You could sleep in it…but you don’t!” There are 16 new lip colors and lip glosses so pick up one of those or schedule a consultation. Trust anything that Tisa puts on your face.

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Flowers | DUNN & SONNIER - Because parades will be rolling on Valentine’s Day, Dunn & Sonnier will be unable to deliver on Saturday, February 14. Please call this week to schedule your delivery day for next week. T: 504-524-3235

Romantic Getaway | SOUTHERN HOTEL – Retreat to the Southern Hotel for some peace and quiet after a crazy Mardi Gras. Fireplaces abound and you don’t even have to leave the hotel to dine in the most delicious restaurant Ox Lot 9.

Dinner at the Grill Room | WINDSOR COURT – If you’re not an Endymion watcher than Saturday night of Mardi Gras is always a great night to have a delicious dinner. With the Windsor Court a stone’s throw away from the parade route, make a reservation and indulge in their Valentine’s Day menu.

Cupid Martini Table | MALACHITE - Melissa and Adrienne scouted the perfect table for Valentine’s Day…or any day of the year. This little ruby glass dish has concentric gold gilt circles etched into the top, scalloped edges, and it sits on top of a triple arrow solid brass base.

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PJs and Purse | MIGNON - Perfect for the little nugget in your life. They will be excited to climb into bed after a long day of parades if they have these yummy pjs.

XOXO Pillow | JADE – The Pillow Bar is now at home at Jade. While pillows are typically customizable, they have the XOXO and the Crown available in stock for Valentine’s Day and Carnival presents.

Bikini Wax Special | BUFF BEAUTY BAR – Have a happier Valentine’s Day with Buff Beauty Bar and Basics Underneath. If you receive a bikini wax at Buff from Feb 1-14, you will get $15 off at Basics (and if you spend $100 at Basics from Feb 1-14, you will get $15 off of a bikini wax service at Buff).

Valentine’s Card | GROVE STREET PRESS – Write a love note on this card and mail it to your favorite person. Snail mail is the best mail!

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têtê-à-têtê bench | ST. ROMAIN INTERIORS – têtê-à-têtê in French means head to head. This bench allowed the man and woman to face each other and kiss or have an intimate conversation. This French antique is reminiscent of days gone by.

Macaron Trinket Box | ANGELIQUE KIDS - Your kids will love keeping their treasures in this pretty box.

Yellow Typewriter | GALLERY ORANGE – This Yellow Typewriter by artist Nick Clark can be personalized! Acrylic on Canvas & 24″ x 20″ call today to type out your love letter. 504-875-4006

Heart Charm | GOGO JEWELRY – Handcrafted by Gogo, this is an edgy way to say I love you.

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Art | ALEXIS WALTER ART - Alexis has a new collection that she is debuting that is a bit more daring than I have seen in the past. Needless to say, I continue to love everything she does…and feel confident you will too. Schedule an appointment to view her collection by emailing art@alexiswalterart.com

Rain Check | ARNAUD’S – Arnaud’s knows everyone has Mardi Gras on the mind, so they invite you to celebrate Valentine’s Day with them on February 27th, 28th, and March 1st. In addition to their regular a la carte menu, they will offer a 3 course dinner for $55 dollars plus tax and tip. Three different options at each course and a complimentary glass of Moet with dessert. Of course if you still venture to Arnaud’s after the parades on Valentine’s Day, the restaurant will  be festively decorated and they will certainly make everyone feel wonderful and schmoopy whoopy!

Cosmetic Case | EMMA’S SHOES AND ACCESSORIES – Grab a lip gloss from Tisa and pop it into a Tory Burch cosmetic case from Emma’s and any girl will thank you.

Pink Champagne | MARTIN WINE CELLAR – Many of my most favorite memories involve pink champagne, so now it has become my signature drink. Nothing says Valentine’s Day like pink champagne! If you procrastinate, you can easily walk to the Baronne Street location and grab a bottle to surprise your Valentine on the parade route.

Just in case you’re wondering, I’ll take anything on this list! Happy Valentine’s Day and…

TELL THEM SCOUT SENT YOU!

–TAYLOR

 

Feb
4
2015

TSG New Orleans Birthday Giveaway!

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Happy 3rd Birthday TSG New Orleans! What started as a labor of love in Charlottesville, Virginia has become a national collection of over 50 City Guides capturing the best of local. Because of the support of the talented people in our community, The Scout Guide grew quickly across the nation with New Orleans leading the charge as one of the first 10 cities. Next week, we will celebrate our 100th publication with the debut of The Scout Guide Charleston Volume 4.

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It has been such an awesome experience to watch New Orleans businesses grow over the course of the past three years, and it is a true privilege to share their story with you.  I would not have made it this far without the many wonderful business owners featured in Volume 1 who took a leap of faith and trusted me with the promotion of their business. I am grateful that they, too, saw the value in bringing a beautiful publication like The Scout Guide to New Orleans. (If you’re curious to know the story behind how TSG began in New Orleans than please read my very first blog entry.)

And now for the giveaway…

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As a thank you to our loyal followers, I am giving away a Young Fellows Membership to the New Orleans Museum of Art! I joined NOMA as a Young Fellow in April 2014, and I have enjoyed every minute of it. NOMA hosts on and off campus events for their patrons including: Cocktails with Mel Chin, White Linen Night at Octavia Art Gallery, special access to LOVE in the Garden, private dinner at Upperline, a visit to George Dunbar’s home, a trip to ExhibitBe, curated tour of Photorealism, NOMA’s holiday party, and just last night’s happy hour at Martine Chaisson Gallery…to name a few. NOMA has grand plans for 2015, and we all want you to be a part of this group! Take a moment to test your luck and if you don’t win, we still hope you will consider joining this dynamic group of young patrons between the ages of 21 and 45 who are committed to supporting the museum’s mission of championing artistic innovation in our community. Details on the contest below.

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Reply to this blog stating what you love most about NOMA. It can be anything from a piece of art to Friday Nights at NOMA, Yoga in the Sculpture Garden or an item to buy in the gift store. It can even be the glass of wine you can get at Café NOMA after a visiting an exhibition! Anyone can enter to win, but a YF membership is for people between the ages of 21-45. If you don’t meet that criteria, gift it to someone you love who will enjoy going to some of the best cultural events in town. Contest begins today (1/30/15) at 9 am and ends this evening at midnight. Encourage people to join in the fun on social media too.

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Thank you New Orleans for giving me the opportunity to tell our story. Cheers to many more successful years of promoting the best of New Orleans!

TELL THEM SCOUT SENT YOU!

–TAYLOR

P.S. If you’re curious to know the story behind how TSG began in New Orleans than please read my very first blog entry.

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Jan
30
2015

The Most Creative Show On Earth

Mardi Gras has often been referred to as “The Greatest Show on Earth.” Here at TSG, we like to think of it as “The Most Creative Show on Earth.” Its all in the details: the building of a float, the crafting on a costume, the designing of a new Krewe throw, the painting of a coconut, the beading on a ball gown, to the best recipe for a crawfish boil, to the most elaborate King Cake, to the way the band marches down the Avenue…the examples are endless! This highly anticipated celebration is an artisan’s wonderland enjoyed by all.

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It is often said that an invitation sets the tone for a party. No matter what your “Mardi Gras Party” affiliation may be, you certainly must be awed at the creativity that shines through in these invitations to Carnival balls commissioned more than a century ago and designed by local artisans. Featured is the Isabel Spelman Devereux Collection scheduled for auction this weekend at Neal Auction’s Important Winter Estate Auction. Neal Auction Company is pleased to present this special family collection and would like to thank noted historian Henri Schindler and Wayne Phillips, Curator of Costumes and Textiles, Louisiana State Museum, for their kind assistance with the catalogue.

Invitations featured date as far back as 1883. How lucky we are to live in one of America’s oldest cities that still upholds its oldest traditions?

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“In her hall closet another box held her Carnival bulletins, and on special occasions when there was plenty of time, we would haul out four or five papers to carefully unfold on the floor and pretend it was Mardi Gras day. My brother, Devereux, and I, draped in the costume jewels of our grandfathers, would often pretend to be King and Queen of whatever parades happened to be rolling that day. We had Mardi Gras whenever we wanted.” – Granddaughter to Isabel Spelman Deveraux

 

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While you don’t need an official invitation to Mardi Gras, let it be said that the bar was set high from the very beginning to make Carnival in New Orleans the grandest show on Earth. New Orleanians are trusted to uphold the tradition and paint a beautiful masterpiece every year. Mardi Gras shines a spotlight on independent businesses, local trade and talented visionaries and invites all to participate in its glory.

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Here is a round up of some of our most creative Carnival finds from the TSG network, designed and inspired by local artisans.

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1. NOLA Couture Mardi Gras Ties and Belts: New Orleanian Cecile Hardy established NOLA Couture in 2006 in the wake of Hurricane Katrina – the ideal and actualization of the brand emerged from the need to lift peoples spirits, and rebuild New Orleans’ local economy. The company celebrates the city’s individuality through custom designs featuring iconic Crescent City motifs. NOLA Couture’s was founded at a low point in New Orleans history, but soon because a way for people to show their NOLA pride.

2. Chef Brandon Felder of Le Foret creates a big seasonal indulgence with a King Cake Foie Gras. Le Foret is a contemporary New Orleans restaurant offering a menu featuring strong French technique and seasonal flavors. A meal here is designed to live up to the expectations of a celebratory event or to just add something special to an otherwise ordinary week day. In every dish, you’ll discover Southern inspiration elevated with expert execution.

3. Judy Cobb was the mastermind behind many of the most beautifully designed Carnival Queen and Maids gowns. Her two daughters created these Mardi Gras pin pillows as a tribute to her love of Carnival and its traditions. They are available at History Antiques.

4. Gogo Borgerding handcrafts these cuffs in any color imaginable, but this is her Mardi Gras collection. Her store is located at 2036 Magazine Street. If you’re going to Krewe du Vieux this weekend, Gogo is on float #1. She reports that she has incredible throws so be sure to yell her name!

P.S. Clover Boutique loved our take on the King Cake Tasting Party too, so they are hosting their own next Thursday, February 5th from 11 am – 2 pm. Champagne, King Cake and Shopping! What more could you ask for?

TELL THEM SCOUT SENT YOU!

– TAYLOR

 

 

Jan
29
2015

New Shoe Store in town…and it sells online too!

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Emma’s Shoes has been the go-to in Mandeville since 2012 and it now has a new location on Rosa Avenue at Metairie Road. Owner Stephanie Pagliarulo saw a niche in the Old Metairie market, and in August of 2014, she opened her doors to offer fashion forward styles to a new Southshore clientele. Recently, the store launched its online store, and even though the store is only a hop, skip and a jump away, it is great news to know you can shop locally for shoes, handbags and accessories from the comfort of your own home.

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Events are starting to gear up again in this town. From Mardi Gras luncheons to Spring Fête’s like Art in Bloom on March 18th, its time to begin scouting for the perfect outfit or a new accessory to freshen up your go-to staples. Stephanie shares her spring shoe intel:

Mules are still strong for Spring….keep it modern by sticking with clean lines and no “frills”.  The “city sandal” with a chunky block heel is very of-the-moment right now as well. “Fashion sneakers” are going strong with lots of fun design details! – STEPHANIE PAGLIARULO

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Emma’s Shoes and Accessories carries MZ Wallace, Rebecca Minkoff, Kate Spade, Vince, Tory Burch, L.K. Bennett, Botkier, See by Chloe, Samantha Wills, Vita Fede, Uno de 50, Tom Ford, Whitney Beads, Alexis Bittar, Zac by Zac Posen, Harper Avenue, Whiting & Davis, Joie, Hunter, Évocateur, AGL, B Brian Atwood, Lucchese, Materia Prima, Dee Keller, Schutz, Pura Lopez, Wendy Mignot Pearls, Duscia Skas, Yosi Samira, Veronique Branquinho.

These are all brands found in major department stores and online hubs, so next time you think you want what they have, please consider calling Emma’s to check their inventory to keep small businesses like Stephanie’s thriving.

TSG TIP: Follow Emma’s on Instagram at @emmasshoes and @emmasshoesnola for AMAZING sales.

Emma’s Shoes

110 Rosa Avenue at Metairie Road

3904 Highway 22 in Mandeville

T: 504-407-0668

TELL THEM SCOUT SENT YOU!

– TAYLOR

Jan
28
2015