When ascending the corporate ladder, the young professional must be armed with the following: sharp business attire, a braying work laugh reserved for lame boss jokes, a firm handshake, and the ability to hold one’s liquor. While the office environment may provide some opportunities for you to showcase your wardrobe and the occasional handshake, social business functions offer ample chances to strut your stuff for the powers that be. Any social event involving workmates has the potential to evolve into a business meeting, especially where clients or the boss are involved and you should be primed and ready to turn on the charm at any moment. Therefore, it is crucial to your career and office reputation to exercise good drinking etiquette.
Meeting co-workers for drinks after work and other similar functions can be tricky. The happy hour meet offers a casual environment for you to socialize with fellow desk jockeys, but you should maintain a bit of your professional persona. Unleashing your inner frat boy in front of co-workers will open you up to criticism and turn you into water cooler fodder. Instead, take the opportunity to schmooze and impress them with your knowledge of fine liquors. In the bar scene, it’s not how much you drink that counts, it’s what you drink.
Kelly Ekas of The Globe, Sam Snead’s Candie Ryser, and Peggy Lupica of 310 Park South all agree that the flavored martini is the drink of the year. Although the three-martini lunch has faded away, the beverage lives on after dark. To score points with hip colleagues, order a couple of the martinis and experiment with different flavors. The trendy concoction is still considered to be a woman’s drink. Men wishing to express their masculinity may opt for draft beer or some of the harder liqueurs.
Wine is frequently unfamiliar territory among young professionals, but is a popular favorite with the slightly older set. Become ambi-”drink”-trous by attending a wine tasting in your town and familiarize yourself with the process and flavorings. Sam Snead’s in downtown Orlando offers free wine tastings every Monday night. Expanding your palette beyond frou-frou drinks and beer will allow you to blend in with more worldly associates.
Once your chosen beverage has arrived, hold it with your left hand to keep the right one free for handshakes and business card trade-offs. You never know whom you might meet, but it could be someone who may have an impact your career. Regardless of drink specials, steer clear of drinks with umbrellas, whipped cream, and names like Sex on the Beach, Harvey Wallbanger, or Tropical Analgesic. These beverages, along with anything served in a fishbowl, lack the level of sophistication you may wish to attain. Save the “girl drinks” for evenings with close friends.
Earn everyone’s good graces by offering to buy a round early in the night. Waiting until the crowd thins out or everyone has had enough will make you the office cheapskate and may preclude you from further group outings. To lessen the alcohol effects, snack on an appetizer throughout the evening or, if the session lasts longer than two hours, casually suggest an upgrade to dinner.
Circulate the group and participate in as many conversations as you can, but refrain from butting into chats to interject irrelevant chitchat. Use this time to give your work laugh a workout. Play the role of social butterfly and mix your ideas for the company with charming anecdotes to show that you’re not all business.
Most importantly, know your limit. Cut yourself off before the bartender does. Unsure of your liquor tolerance? Once you begin entertaining private thoughts of Arvid from Accounting, stop drinking. Or take the serious route and calculate the number of consumed drinks in relation to your body weight to assess your Blood Alcohol Content (BAC). Your BAC is the estimated percent of alcohol in the bloodstream. To be safe, use the sip and savor approach to drinking or set a two-drink maximum limit.
Finally, take a cue from comedians and leave your colleagues wanting more. Bid proper farewells, settle up your tab, and head home after your final drink. Leaving early will show that you’re dedicated to your career, but there’s more to your life than just work. The professional who spend their whole life tied to work may rise to the top rung faster, but they will fall much harder once exhaustion sets in.
Following the rules of drinking etiquette may not ensure an automatic raise or promotion, but it will boost your reputation as a classy professional among workmates. A wise drink choice or knowing how to carry yourself during social business functions could get you on the list for other important functions and you never know where that may lead.
originally published in the December-January 2002/2003 issue of Industry magazine.
There’s nothing like a good drink to buff out the edges of a rough day. When administered properly, alcohol can help ease the mind and body of stress. Downtown Orlando offers a wide variety of bars, clubs, and restaurants housing varying levels of ambience and drink specials. Choosing a destination is intimidating to the uninformed imbiber. One suggestion is to start at one end of Orange Avenue and drink your way to the other. Another suggestion is to check out Sam Snead’s downtown location.
Sam Snead’s caters to the whims of clientele ranging from nine-to-five professionals to first-daters to those in search of a nice place to nosh. The low-key golf decor of the restaurant won’t have you yelling “fore,” but their specialty drinks may inspire you to buy “four.” One specialty drink to try is the restaurant’s popular Candie’s Apple Martini. The drink is named after restaurant owner and recipe creator, Candie Ryser.
Don’t be put off by the “martini” part of the name. Yes, the traditional martini is a mix of gin and vermouth with either an olive or a twist of lemon. Today’s translation of martini is a little loose, turning a classy drink into more palatable concoctions, but the spirit of the original remains.
Candie’s Apple Martini continues to break down traditions. While green in color (candy apples are usually red), the drink is rich and sweet in flavor and captures the essence of its creator. The drink’s 2:1 ratio of apple pucker to vodka delightfully masks the presence of the vodka, making the drink easy to sip and a perfect beverage for drinking virgins, timid consumers, and those of us who don’t care for the taste of alcohol. A slice of Granny Smith apple tops off the drink, giving cherries, olives, and tiny paper umbrellas a run for their money. Because of its light and fruity nature, sucking down several of these would take minimal effort. Even though it doesn’t taste like an alcoholic beverage, it does pack some punch that can be felt several minutes into your second or third drink.
The martini was perfected by Candie last year, when she combined her love of apple martinis with a need for a signature drink for the restaurant. She and her staff took to their experiments for nearly five hours before reaching the final recipe. Since then, the concoction has soared in popularity with both guys and girls. On arrival, it may look like a girl drink, but it’s definitely strong enough for a man. Candie’s Apple Martini is only available at the downtown location.
The official recipe:
1 oz. vodka
2 1/2 oz. apple pucker
a splash of Sam Snead’s blend of splash sour
1 thin slice of Granny Smith apple
Mix and serve.
If apple and vodka doesn’t suit your taste buds, Sam Snead’s offers a host of other martini selections including Strange Brew, Chocolate, Man Style (traditional with blue cheese stuffed olive and a hot pepper), and Booty Call (a mix of vodka and Red Bull energy drink). The restaurant has daily drink specials, live music on the weekends, and occasional special events. Drop by for a leisurely lunch or hang out and watch sports on the 50 inch plasma-screen television.
originally published in the February-March 2003 issue of Industry magazine.
After a day of play at Universal Studios or Islands of Adventure, don’t head straight back to the parking lot. There’s more fun to be had at Universal’s CityWalk, the newest nightspot for tourists in Orlando. This 30-acre entertainment complex is a good place to unwind from park hopping or to kick it up after a day of sleeping in at the hotel. From themed bars and restaurants to shops to running through water fountains, there’s a little something for everyone at CityWalk.
In addition to restaurants and clubs, there is always something going on out on the streets. Cooking demonstrations, trivia contests, and local festivals are just some of the events taking place at CityWalk during the year. The small stage next to CityJazz houses live entertainment in 20-minute doses. The water fountain in the middle of the complex is a great place for kids to splash and cool off. Take advantage of photo opportunities in front of the lighted industrial "waterfall."
If you’ve got kids with you, but still want to partake of some adult beverages, send them over to the Universal Loew’s Cineplex. With 20 screens and several snack bars and arcades, your kids will be occupied for hours.
No trip to anywhere in Orlando is complete without paying visits to the gift shops found in every venue. Pick up a shirt or a shot glass from each bar you visit, just in case you don’t remember where you were the next morning.
Enter the world of R&B and soul in the Motown Cafe, located at the entrance of CityWalk. As you enter the restaurant, you’ll find yourself surrounded by memorabilia of Motown’s greatest. Stay downstairs for an American meal amongst the Jackson 5 costumes and wax statues of the Supremes or head up the lighted Stairway of Success to the Promenade dining area and the Big Chill Lounge.
If you’re lucky, you’ll be able to eat and dance to the singing group Motown Cafe Moments. Featured on the Motortown Revue Stage, this group performs all of Motown’s classic hits during their 20-minute shows.
Karaoke night offers up the opportunity to pretend you’re Diana Ross or Stevie Wonder. Take karaoke a step further upstairs at SuperStar Recording Studio where you can make your own video or CD to take home. If you're not the performing type, sit in a booth with a group of friends and pretend you're Berry Gordy looking for the next big star. Relive your dream of being a Solid Gold dancer out on the dance floor in front of the floor level stage. Regardless of who you are, Motown Cafe is worth a blast to the past.
BOB MARLEY: A TRIBUTE TO FREEDOM
Take a trip down to Jamaica without leaving CityWalk by visiting Bob Marley: A Tribute to Freedom. The restaurant is a replica of Marley's Kingston home and feels like a home. Smells of authentic Jamaican cuisine and incense fill the open-air restaurant. Live bands play familiar reggae standards from the gazebo stage. The dance floor in the middle of the room allows reveling in the freedom to dance and find your own island groove under the stars. Retreat to the bar upstairs to observe the groove of others.
Celebrate Bob Marley’s spirit and message of One Love through music. Many design details, from the tile roof and green wooden window shutters outside, have been supervised by the Marley family themselves, to ensure accuracy.
Mix the Marley atmosphere with Florida's weather and you'll swear you're jammin' in Jamaica. When you leave, don't forget to thank the host for letting you into his home. Bob Marley can be found in front of the building in bronze statue form.
If reggae and R&B aren't your cup of tea, grab a mug of brew over at Pat O'Briens. While you won't find a dance floor to practice moves from Riverdance, you can do what the Irish are most famous for, drinking. Pat O'Briens in Orlando is an exact replica of the original landmark bar in New Orleans. With three bar rooms and New Orleans style appetizers, you won't mind the lack of authentic Irish music.
The Main Bar contains a large flat screen television for viewing the game du jour and drinking. The Patio Bar is perfect for a romantic and relaxing moment away from the dance crowds. Gaze up at the sky or admire the fountains, which spout water and fire. Stop by the Piano Bar to hear the dueling pianos play all-time favorites and provide lounge style entertainment. While in there, don't forget to look up at the decorative beer steins festooning the ceiling.
Pat O’Briens is a nice bar for sitting all night, chatting up tourists, and getting sloshed. It’s a great way to pretend you’re from Ireland. With security beefed up as much as it is these days, it’s not a good idea to pick a fight with your fellow bar mates. Slainte!
Take your evening down a notch and chill out at CityJazz, one of the more upscale venues at CityWalk. A tour around the place will introduce you to unique memorabilia of the biggest names in jazz. Some examples of the rare personal belongings include Ella Fitzgerald's performance gowns, Dave Brubeck's glasses, and Miles Davis' high school diploma. Behind the bar is an impressive display case full of instruments from Glenn Miller, Sonny Rollins, and Maynard Ferguson.
You can enjoy live music from both the legends of jazz and some of the hottest rising new stars. You can pay tribute to the giants of jazz enshrined in the Down Beat Jazz Hall of Fame®. Pick a table in the back of the room and feast on appetizers including Sevrugs Caviar, assorted sushi, duck potstickers, escargot, and Oysters Rockefeller. Then burn off the calories by getting down on the small dance floor in front of the stage.
CityJazz is a great place to get away from the bustle of the outside entertainment. Enjoy live entertainment and develop a greater appreciation of America’s most important art form.
The Latin Quarter is more than just a hot nightspot. When they open the doors to the general public, the Latin Quarter is a museum, a restaurant, and a dance studio. How convenient! Hop on the Latin culture bandwagon and party like they do.
In search of fine Latin cuisine? This is the right place to go. The dishes are as spicy and hot as the dancers. Delicacies are picked from Central America, South America, Mexico, and the Caribbean. If you’re seated near the kitchen, you can watch the chefs prepare your meals. The lighting and ambience gives the feeling less of being in someone’s home and more of being in an upscale eatery.
The stage and dance floor play host to dancers and musicians ranging from Salsa to Merengue to Mariachi. At any time during the course of your meal, a group of dancers put on a brief show to enhance your dining experience. After each performance, the dancers are available for impromptu dance lessons to guests.
Latin Quarter makes for a fine dining experience if you’re not daring enough to shake your maracas in front of strangers. Fans of Latin music will enjoy the spirit of the place.
Wedged between Pat O’Briens and Latin Quarter is CityWalk's only straight up dance club, the groove. The nightclub has an eclectic mix of modern technology and classic decor from five eras. Roaming through the nightclub you'll discover a Vaudeville stage from the 1890s and numerous theatrical posters from that era, you'll find bars reminiscent of a speakeasy from the Roaring '20s, plus posters and theater chairs from the early days of cinema, and you'll encounter furniture and fixtures that take you from a '60s flashback to a '70s discotheque.
The dance floor is the perfect place to show off the moves you learned at the Latin Quarter or invent some steps of your own. Sneak off to the darkened corners and theater chairs for a little action with your date. Take a break from the jumping dance scene in one of the three lounges. Visit the Red Lounge to heat things up, the velvet chairs and flame-covered walls will help. Check out the Blue Lounge if you’re into the high-tech retro feel. Or give peace a chance in the earthy Green Lounge.
the groove is definitely the place in CityWalk to mingle with strangers and make new friends. It’s also conducive to large groups. Just stake out one of the lounges and hang there all night long. Go to the groove and get into your groove.
JIMMY BUFFETT’S MARGARITAVILLE
Overlooking the waterfront is Jimmy Buffett’s Margaritaville. The atmosphere here is more laid back and will make you feel like you’re sitting in the middle of his greatest hits album. This isn’t the place to kick up your heels or get your swerve on, but you can definitely see some sights.
Upon entering, the scenery goes from fast-paced entertainment to lazy island fun. Margaritaville is what it must be like to be inside Jimmy Buffett’s head. The walls are filled with nautical decor and Buffett memorabilia. The stage built to look like a rustic island hut, houses classic rock cover bands performing nightly.
If hunger is what ails you, grab a table and order Caribbean, Cajun and fresh Florida fare sampled by Jimmy himself. You may think you’re reading his album cover instead of a menu, but some items are named after his famous songs like Cheeseburger in Paradise. Stick around long enough and watch the volcano atop the Volcano Bar erupt with fresh Margaritas to enjoy.
True Parrotheads will adore this restaurant; others may enjoy it for a while and move on. Don’t worry about that lost shaker of salt, there’s more in the adjoining gift shop.
Content on this site was originally written by Katharine Miller between 2000-2015. Many feature articles and interviews were published in print and on websites that no longer exist. Katharine is reproducing her written material here for portfolio and archival purposes only. Links and credits to clients and original publication will be included where possible.