About Tales of the Cocktail Foundation
Tales of the Cocktail Foundation is an non-profit organization which is the global leader in spirits education and a platform to tackle issues facing the industry. The pillars of the Foundation are to Educate, Advance, and Support the hospitality industry through programs that benefit individuals and organizations in the community and to make lasting impact in communities that host our events.
Tales of the Cocktail Foundation is an non-profit organization that educates, advances, and supports the global hospitality industry and creates lasting impact in our host communities.
Tales of the Cocktail Foundation is the global leader in spirits education and a platform to tackle issues facing the industry.
The pillars of the Foundation are to Educate, Advance, and Support the hospitality industry through programs that benefit individuals and organizations in the community and to make lasting impact in communities that host our events.
We believe in the power of education to advance the hospitality industry. Programs connect the community to the knowledge of industry leaders and innovators via seminars about spirits history and new craft techniques, business training, an online knowledgebase, access to emerging and industry-leading products, and direct mentorship that can change career trajectory and lives.
We are a platform for thought leadership and development of standards around key issues facing our industry. Woven throughout our programs are professional networking and community building opportunities to better connect our diverse, global community. We accelerate the growth of the spirits industry through forward-thinking partnerships and mentorship programs, such as the Cocktail Apprentice Program, to develop the next generation of industry leaders.
We create lasting impact in the communities we serve through financial and promotional support programs geared to individuals, organizations and communities that define the history and future of the industry and in those cities that host our events. We provide direct resources in areas such as education, healthcare, addiction, sustainability and advancement of diversity. Through our support programs, the Foundation will support those who are the catalyst at the forefront of defining industry standards and of the advancement of our craft.
Tales of the Cocktail
Founded in 2002, Tales of the Cocktail? has grown from an annual walking tour of historic New Orleans cocktail bars, into the world’s premier cocktail festival. Each year the international bar and spirits industry is welcomed to New Orleans for a week of seminars, tastings, networking and special events. With hundreds of opportunities developed specifically for bartenders, distillers and other bar and spirits professionals, Tales of the Cocktail is the industry’s annual meeting place for the exchanging of new ideas, products and techniques. In addition, Tales of the Cocktail Foundation also produces Tales of the Cocktail? on Tour; supports the Cocktail Apprentice Program, an exclusive mentorship program for up-and-coming bartenders; manages the Tales 365 membership program; distributes industry focused grants; curates programming which addresses the serious issues our industry faces on a regular basis within its initiative Beyond the Bar; celebrates the The Dame Hall of Fame?, a collection of women who have made unique and lasting contributions to the global hospitality industry; and publishes bartender-focused educational content year-round on TalesoftheCocktail.org.
Tales on Tour!
Following successful stops in Vancouver, Buenos Aires, Mexico City, and Edinburgh, Tales of the Cocktail? on Tour is taking its show on the road once again, to Puerto Rico, in an effort to help rebuild through supporting the region’s spirits community and hospitality industry. This four-day festival will feature renowned bartenders sharing their insights at a Day of Education, Beyond the Bar programming centered on mental health and wellness programming, a Day of Service, Spirited Dinners, and the organization’s signature Cocktail Apprentice Program. as we dive into Old San Juan's cocktail scene by night. Join us in San Juan, Puerto Rico in Spring 2018 to get a taste of what Tales of the Cocktail is all about in a city you’ll never forget.
Tales 365 is a membership program from Tales of the Cocktail that gives spirits professionals from around the world discounts and early access to Tales event tickets. Membership includes ongoing special offers from some of the best barware product producers in the world.
From Left to Right: Gary Solomon, Jr. (TOTCF Board of Directors Co-Chair), Sam Solomon, Martha Solomon, Jenny Butler (TOTCF Chief Executive Officer), Neal Bodenheimer (TOTCF Board of Directors Co-Chair), and Caroline Nabors Rosen (TOTCF President) Photo Credit - Cory James Photo
Gary Solomon Jr.
A native of New Orleans, Gary Solomon, Jr. has led the development and production of several of the country’s most popular events and attractions. He serves as the Consulting Producer for Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve in New Orleans, and was responsible for striking the deal to feature the nationally televised broadcast’s first-ever Central Time Zone countdown. Gary also co-developed the historic Civic Theatre in New Orleans, transforming the city’s oldest theater into a modern, flexible, high-tech event venue. As President and Co-Founder of Solomon Group, he has served as Executive Producer for major events that include the College Football Playoff, ESSENCE Festival, and Katrina 10. Under his leadership, the entertainment design, production and management firm has been listed on the Inc. 5000 as one of America’s fastest-growing private companies for the past four years. Solomon Group creates eye-catching audience experiences for sports leagues and global brands including the NFL (Super Bowl, Draft), NBA (All-Star Weekend), NCAA (Men’s Final Four), NHL (upcoming All-Star Weekend), SXSW and more. He has also overseen the creation of jaw-dropping exhibits and interactive environments for George Washington’s Mount Vernon, The National WWII Museum and the upcoming Sazerac House currently underway. Gary was named to Inc. Magazine’s prestigious “30 Under 30: World’s Coolest Young Entrepreneurs” list, and has been featured in The Atlantic, SUCCESS Magazine, Forbes and USA Today. Gary currently serves on the board of the New Orleans Center for Creative Arts and is the past-Chair of The NOCCA Institute. Since 2011, Gary and Solomon Group have been a part of Tales of the Cocktail and provided production services for the Spirited Awards as well as major brand activations for the world’s premier cocktail festival.
Neal Bodenheimer is the owner, bartender and restaurateur behind Cure Co., which is comprised of acclaimed bars, Cure and Cane & Table, in New Orleans.
Caroline Nabors RosenCaroline’s career in the hospitality industry began with Mountain Valley Spring Water in 2009, where she served as a Marketing Director, with a focus on national accounts and sponsorships. Five years later, Caroline became a partner at Matter Creative Studio, a full-service brand consultancy. In 2015, Caroline was hired to be the Executive Director of the John Besh Foundation. In that role, she furthered New Orleans’ culinary community by providing scholarships to culinary school for qualified minority applicants and by providing micro-loans to farmers in the New Orleans region. This role allowed Caroline to develop deep relationships with chefs, food brands, and numerous publications as she created events, community partnerships, and fundraising opportunities for the Foundation. Caroline left the Besh Foundation in November, 2017 and went on to accept her current role as President of the Tales of the Cocktail Foundation. In her present role, Caroline serves on the leadership team of the new Foundation, shaping its global suite of events and forming new philanthropic initiatives and grants programming. Caroline is very active in New Orleans and the wider Southeast community in numerous ways. She was named a 2016 “Person Changing the South” by Southern Living magazine and served on the board of the Southern Food and Beverage Museum. In 2018 she was also named of the "55 Most Influential People in Dining and Nightlife" by the Observer. Caroline also currently serves as the Vice President of the New Orleans chapter of the Les Dames d’Escoffier.
After spending 13 years in the wine industry, Jenny Butler became Director of Operations for the Business Council of New Orleans, an organization of 79 CEOs focused on public policy and economic development in the metropolitan New Orleans area. It was there that she met the Solomon family, with whom she has worked in recent years to ensure the impact of their philanthropic endeavors with organizations including the Emeril Lagasse Foundation, the Link Stryjewski Foundation, New Orleans Center for the Creative Arts, and the University of New Orleans. Additionally, a significant portion of Butler’s time has been dedicated to furthering the Solomon Family’s long term commitment to adults and children with exceptionalities - namely St. Michael Special School in New Orleans and St. Lillan Academy in Baton Rouge. Butler played a key role in the family’s purchase of the trademarks for Tales of the Cocktail as well as its successful reintroduction as the Tales of the Cocktail Foundation, a 501(c)(3) non-profit committed to educating, supporting and advancing the global spirits community and hospitality industry and creating lasting impact in its host communities while ensuring its now $18 million economic impact on the city of New Orleans. As CEO, she will be responsible for the overall operations, continued growth and impact of the Foundation as it grows its role as a global leader in spirits and identifies solutions to issues that impact those who work within the industry.