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Traveler's Roulette

"Norway to Newfoundland! This route, I quickly realized, was a subject to itself. For it was the route the Vikings took when they set their clinker-boats in the sea, I resolved to use the wanderings of these cranky, restless people as a rough travel itinerary, trekking the same gaunt cliffs they trekked, camping on the same wind-skudded sherries they camped on, breathing the same salubrious air: But I would play the occasional game of traveler's roulette, too. Since couldn't very well ship aboard the same boats as Eric the Red and his companions, I would ship aboard any boat I could find, even if it sailed somewhat off course. Also, between a fast boat and a slow boat, I would choose the slow boat. Between the slow boat and walking, I would choose the latter, as walking makes the world the vast and savory place it used to be in times long past." -- Lawrence Millman in Last Places: A Journey in the North

A series of exercises in absurdity & frustration to get you ready to return to travel

"Make plans with a friend six months in advance. As you sit in the restaurant waiting to order, have her delay the plans by an hour, then eleven hours, before postponing them indefinitely."

How to Train for Your First Flight in Two Years by Ali Solomon (The New Yorker)

Parks Under Pressure

“What does 750,000 people more in a single year flushing the toilets five times a day do to your wastewater treatment facilities?”

Why Do The Wrong People Travel?

Elaine Stritch does Noel Coward.

Commuters needed this. Frequent travelers needed this. Tourists needed this. New York needed this.

"No, the huge, lofty train hall, with its soaring skylights, doesn’t magically resurrect the old Pennsylvania Station or extinguish the raging dumpster fire that is the current one. It leaves all sorts of herculean challenges and tasks around Penn Station unresolved. But it delivers on its promise, giving the city the uplifting gateway it deserves. When was the last time you could say something like that about a public works project?"
The rest of the story:
A $1.6 billion transformation of a post office has given the city a lofty, light-filled steel, glass and marble cathedral. Moynihan Train Hall: It’s Stunning. And, a First Step by Michael Kimmelman (New York Times)

“All travel has its advantages ...

... If the passenger visits better countries, he may learn to improve his own, and if fortune carries him to worse, he may learn to enjoy it.” -- Samuel Johnson, A Journey to the Western Islands of Scotland and The Journal of a Tour to the Hebrides.

The Things We Cooked Last Summer

Stuck at home, we've discovered that restaurant-quality meals and foods that we imagined were only available to us from ethnic eateries and foreign travel are actually as simple as pie when you put your mind to it. Restaurants may be closed, but heaven help us, ethnic markets are open.
Credit...iStock/Getty Images
Housebound because of the pandemic, an international correspondent finds a way to travel the globe in her kitchen: Conjuring Up the World Through the Sense of Taste by Hannah Beech (New York Times)

Stay or Go

Following the advice, reported by Fodor Travel, of health experts like the WHO will minimize your chance of getting sick from this new coronavirus. The advice to protect yourself from getting sick -- and to minimize the spread to others -- is pretty easy to follow, and it’s what we should all be doing anyway to prevent colds and flus.

Wash Your Hands: A 20-second scrub using warm running water and soap is best (the Mayo Clinic says to sing “Happy Birthday” twice); one of Canada’s provincial health officers says “wash your hands like you’ve been chopping jalapenos and you need to change your contact [lenses]”). Then, rinse with clean water and dry your hands. It’s important to dry them, though the jury is out about the best way (some studies say hot air blowers spread germs and that paper towels or clean fabric towels are best; other studies disagree). Soap and water are more effective, but if you don’t have access to a sink, using a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol is fine (scrub well). Regardless, wash your hands often: certainly after coughing, sneezing or blowing your nose; before you prepare food; before and after eating, and after using the restroom. And throw those used tissues away immediately (and then wash your hands).

Avoid Touching Your Face: Most viruses and bacteria enter the body through mucous membranes like the mouth, nose, and eyes. It’s easy to re-contaminate your hands after washing them, so keeping your hands away from your face is the best way to prevent germs of any type from getting in you.

Cough and Sneeze Into Your Elbow: Yes, covering your cough or sneeze with your hand is preferable to spraying all those tiny virusy droplets directly into the air. But then you’ve contaminated your hand and you’ll inevitably touch something or someone. So, make a new habit of coughing/sneezing into the inside of your elbow (although a tissue should be your first choice). And while you’re at it, break that other habit of crossing your arms and putting your hands right onto your sneeze spots.

Social Distancing: It’s always wise to keep your distance from sick people. During the COVID-19 outbreak, try to keep a three-foot distance from others. No hugs, kisses, or handshakes, please. And really, during cold and flu season why not keep close contact just for loved ones?

Don’t Touch Animals You Don’t Know: Regardless of whether there’s a new coronavirus circulating, staying away from animals when you travel (even that cute stray cat or dog) is a sensible precaution. They likely carry bugs that your body isn’t used to. The WHO is also reminding people of its general advice to be extra careful in markets that have live animals or non-refrigerated meats and fish.

And of course, to prevent others from getting sick, isolate yourself if you have COVID-19 symptoms.

The rest of the story:
 The Latest: Should You Change Your Travel Plans Due to the Coronavirus? by Johanna Read (FodorsTravel)
 Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19): Frequently Asked Travel Questions and Answers (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)

Seneca: On travel as a cure for discontent

1. Do you suppose that you alone have had this experience? Are you surprised, as if it were a novelty, that after such long travel and so many changes of scene you have not been able to shake off the gloom and heaviness of your mind? You need a change of soul rather than a change of climate. Though you may cross vast spaces of sea, and though, as our Vergil remarks,

Lands and cities are left astern, your faults will follow you whithersoever you travel.

2. Socrates made the same remark to one who complained; he said: "Why do you wonder that globe-trotting does not help
you, seeing that you always take yourself with you? The reason which set you wandering is ever at your heels." What pleasure is there in seeing new lands? Or in surveying cities and spots of interest? All your bustle is useless. Do you ask why such flight does not help you? It is because you flee along with yourself. You must lay aside the burdens of the mind; until you do this, no place will satisfy you.

3. Reflect that your present behaviour is like that of the prophetess whom Vergil describes: she is excited and goaded into fury, and contains within herself much inspiration that is not her own:

The priestess raves, if haply she may shake
The great god from her heart.

You wander hither and yon, to rid yourself of the burden that rests upon you, though it becomes more troublesome by reason of your very restlessness, just as in a ship the cargo when stationary makes no trouble, but when it shifts to this side or that, it causes the vessel to heel more quickly in the direction where it has settled. Anything you do tells against you, and you hurt yourself by your very unrest; for you are shaking up a sick man.

4, That trouble once removed, all change of scene will become pleasant; though you may be driven to the uttermost ends of the earth, in whatever corner of a savage land you may find yourself, that place, however forbidding, will be to you a hospitable abode. The person you are matters more than the place to which you go; for that reason we should not make the mind a bondsman to any one place. Live in this belief: "I am not born for any one corner of the universe; this whole world is my country."

5. If you saw this fact clearly, you would not be surprised at getting no benefit from the fresh scenes to which you roam each time through
weariness of the old scenes. For the first would have pleased you in each case, had you believed it wholly yours. As it is, however, you are not journeying; you are drifting and being driven, only exchanging one place for another, although that which you seek, – to live well, – is found everywhere.

6. Can there be any spot so full of confusion as the Forum? Yet you can live quietly even there, if necessary. Of course, if one were allowed to make one's own arrangements, I should flee far from the very sight and neighborhood of the Forum. For just as pestilential places assail even the strongest constitution, so there are some places which are also unwholesome for a healthy mind which is not yet quite sound, though recovering from its ailment.

7. I disagree with those who strike out into the midst of the billows and, welcoming a stormy existence, wrestle daily in hardihood of soul with life's problems. The wise man will endure all that, but will not choose it; he will prefer to be at peace rather than at war. It helps little to have cast out your own faults if you must quarrel with those of others.

8. Says one: "There were thirty tyrants surrounding Socrates, and yet they could not break his spirit"; but what does it matter how many masters a man has? "Slavery" has no plural; and he who has scorned it is free, – no matter amid how large a mob of over-lords he stands.

9. It is time to stop, but not before I have paid duty. "The knowledge of sin is the beginning of salvation." This saying of Epicurus seems to me to be a noble one. For he who does not know that he has sinned does not desire correction; you must discover yourself in the wrong before you can reform yourself.

10. Some boast of their faults. Do you think that the man has any thought of mending his ways who counts over his vices as if they were virtues? Therefore, as far as possible, prove yourself guilty, hunt up charges against yourself; play the part, first of accuser, then of judge, last of intercessor. At times be harsh with yourself.


Letter 28 from Moral letters to Lucilius by Seneca.

Tout de JetSuiteX

"My trip from the Bay Area to Los Angeles on a chartered semiprivate plane with JetSuiteX cost a fraction of a traditional flight and convinced me I'd never suffer through a giant airport for the journey again. There was no wait, minimal security protocols, and a comfortable lounge with free snacks, drinks, and WiFi."

The rest of the story:
I flew home for the holidays on a little-known airline with zero wait time that feels like a chartered jet, and I'm never flying 'normally' again by Erin Brodwin (Business Insider)

It's a fact!

The scientific theory I like best is that the rings of Saturn are composed entirely of lost airline luggage. -- Mark Russell

Resource: Wallpaper City Guides

Focusing on architecture, art and design, each of Phaidon's Wallpaper City Guides is illustrated with more than 50 color photographs and protected by Pantone covers. These pocket-sized travel bibles point you toward a city's hippest nightlife, buzziest hotels, coolest retail, most influential art galleries and cultural spaces, and the best in local design and contemporary architecture. More than 100 destinations are available, from Atlanta to Zurich. Ten volumes are also available in French.

Also distributed for iPhone and iPad, Wallpaper City Guides apps are more portable and interactive than the book versions, with extra features such as photo galleries and in-app web browsing. Tap the screen to call a restaurant to book a table, locate it on our map, and use GPS to discover where to go for a drink nearby.

Why the publisher would bother to print the books in French but neglect to make the apps available for Android is not explained.

Wallpaper City Guides are available in many book and travel stores, from Phaidon and at Amazon.

Call it the Ice-Bucket List

The American Bar at The Savoy London took home this year's Spirited Awards Crystal Trophy and the honor of being recognized as the best bar in the world.
Here are the winners of this year’s Spirited Awards given annually by Tales of the Cocktail Foundation, an organization that supports education and research for the hospitality industry. The regions represented are Europe, the Middle East & Africa, Asia Pacific, the Americas (Latin America, the Caribbean and Canada) and, three regions in the US: East, Central and West. A juried Top 10 list was chosen for six bar categories for each part of the world. All the lists have been arranged in alphabetical order.

Best Cocktail Bar – Europe
Happiness Forgets – London, UK, named Best International Cocktail Bar
Jerry Thomas Speakeasy Bar – Rome, Italy
La Botticella – Rome, Italy
Le Syndicat – Paris, France
Paradiso – Barcelona, Spain
Satan's Whiskers – London, UK
Tales & Spirits – Amsterdam, The Netherlands
The Gibson – London, UK
The Kinly Bar – Frankfurt, Germany
Three Sheets – London, UK

Best High Volume Cocktail Bar – Europe
Baba Au Rum – Athens, Greece
Callooh Callay – London, UK
Dirty Dick – Paris, France
HIMKOK – Oslo, Norway
Odori Vermuteria Di Atene – Athens, Greece
Oriole Bar – London, UK
Panda and Sons – Edinburgh, UK
Skyline Rooftop Bar – Venice, Italy
Super Lyan – London, UK
The Clumsies – Athens, Greece

Best Restaurant Bar – Europe
Blind Pig – London, UK
Bonhomie – Paris, France
Cub – London, UK
Danico – Paris, France
Divin Ostilia – Rome, Italy
Hawksmoor Spitalfields – London, UK
Sager & Wilde – London, UK, named Best International Restaurant Bar
Sexy Fish – London, UK
The Clove Club – London, UK
Tjoget/Linje Tio – Stockholm, Sweden

Best Hotel Bar – Europe
Atelier Cocktail bar – Gran Canaria, Spain
Bar du Bristol – Paris, France
Dukes Bar at Dukes – London, UK
Punch Room at London Edition – London, UK
Scarfes Bar at Rosewood – London, UK
The American Bar at The Savoy – London, UK, named Best Bar in the World
The Distillery/ The Resting Room - London
The Lobby Bar at The London Edition - London
The Zetter Townhouse Clerkenwell - London
Zetter Townhouse Marylebone - London

Best New Cocktail Bar – Europe
Antique American Bar – Bratislava, Slovakia
Bar Three – London, UK
Coupette – London, UK, named Best New International Cocktail Bar
Flying Dutchmen Cocktails – Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Horatio Street Social Club – London, UK
Les Grands Verres – Paris, France
Scout – London, UK
The Mint Gun Club – London, UK
Two Schmucks – Barcelona, Sparin
Waeska Bar at the Mandrake – London, UK

Best Bar Team – Europe
Baba Au Rum – Athens, Greece
Danico – Paris, France
El Copitas Bar - St. Petersburg, Russia
Le Lion Bar De Paris – Hamburg, Germany
Le Syndicat – Paris, France
Panda & Sons – Edinburgh, UK
Swift – London, UK
The American Bar, The Savoy – London, UK
The Clumsies – Athens, Greece
The Connaught Bar – London, UK


Best Cocktail Bar – The Americas
Bar Raval – Toronto, Canada
El Baron – Cartagena, Colombia
Florería Atlántico – Buenos Aires, Agentina
Gift shop bar – Toronto, Canada
Guilhotina Bar - São Paulo, Brazil
Le 4e Mur – Montréal, Canada
Licoreria Limantour - Mexico City, Mexico
Nosso - Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Pretty Ugly – Toronto, Canada
The Keefer Bar – Vancouver, Canada

Best High Volume Cocktail Bar – The Americas
Alejandro's – Panama City, Panama
Bar Pamplemousse – Montreal, Canada
Juan Sebastiån Bar – Caracas, Venezuela
Jules Basement - Mexico City, Mexico
La Factoria - San Juan, Puerto Rico
Mahjong Bar – Toronto, Canada
SubAstor – São Paolo, Brazil
Tennessee Tavern – Toronto, Canada
The Box Lounge Groove – Guatemala City, Guatemala
Uptown & the Bronx - Buenos Aires, Argentina

Best Restaurant Bar – The Americas
Acre Restaurant & Cocktail Bar - Cabo San Lucas, Mexico
Alo - Toronto, Canada
Bar Kismet - Halifax, Canada
Central Restaurant – Lima, Peru
Kaito Izakaya - Mexico City, Mexico
La Casita de Rones – San Juan, Puerto Rico
Oncle Antoine – Quebec City, Canada
Sidecut – Whistler, Canada
The Monkey Beach Club – Cozumel, Mexico
UVA Wine & Cocktail Bar – Vancouver, Canada

Best Hotel Bar – The Americas
Alvear Roof Bar at the Alvear Palace – Buenos Aires, Argentina
Bar Artéfact at the Auberge Saint-Antoin – Quebec City, Canada
Copacabana Piano Bar at the Belmond – Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Fifty Mils at Four Seasons Hotel- Mexico City, Mexico
Frank Bar at the Maksoud Plaza Hotel – São Paolo, Brazil
Lobby Lounge at the Fairmont Pacific Rim – Vancouver, Canada
Nacarat Bar at the Queen Elizabeth Hotel – Montreal, Canada
Roofbar at the Tantalo – Panama City, Panama
The Drake Hotel – Toronto, Canada
Townhouse Boutique Hotel & Rooftop – Cartagena, Colombia

Best New Cocktail Bar – The Americas Bar Nacarat – Montréal, Canada
Botanist – Vancouver, Canada
Carmela y Sal – Mexico City, Mexico
Carnaval – Lima, Peru
El Gallo Altanero – Guadalajara, Mexico
Goldie – Toronto, Canada
King Cole Bar - Mexico City, Mexico
Presidente – Buenos Aires, Argentina
The Coldroom – Montreal, Canada
The Strangers Club – Panamá City, Panama

Best Bar Team – The Americas
Civil Liberties – Toronto, Canada
Fifty Mils - Mexico City, Mexico
Guilhotina Bar - São Paulo, Brazil
Kaito Izakaya - Mexico City, Mexico
La Factoria - San Juan, Puerto Rico
Licoreria Limantour - Mexico City, Mexico
Pretty Ugly – Toronto, Canada
Sub Astor Bar - São Paulo, Brazil
The Coldroom – Montréal, Canada
The Keefer Bar – Vancouver, Canada

For Middle East and Africa we had more nominations than ever before but this remains an emerging scene for cocktail culture so we are pleased to be able to share a Top 5 for each category.

Best Cocktail Bar - MEA
Lost & Found – Cyprus
XO – Accra, Ghana
House of Machines – Cape Town, South Africa
Sin and Tax – Johannesburg, South Africa
Weslodge – Dubai, UAE

Best High Volume Cocktail Bar – MEA
Brew Bar – Nairobi, Kenya
Central Station – Beirut, Lebanon
Iris – Dubai, UAE
Miss Lilly’s – Dubai, UAE
Pacifico – Beirut, Lebanon

Best Restaurant Bar - MEA
Buddha Bar – Dubai, UAE
Coya – Dubai, UAE
La Petite Maison – Dubai, UAE
Marble – Johannesburg, South Africa

Best Hotel Bar – MEA
Eau de Vie Bar at the Phoenecia Hotel - Beirut, Lebanon
Gold in 27 at the Burj Al Arab – Dubai, UAE
Hendrick’s Bar at the Four Seasons Hotel – Dubai, UAE
Imperial Cocktail Bar at the Imperial Hotel – Tel Aviv, Israel
Planet Bar at the Mount Nelson Hotel – Cape Town, South Africa

Best New Cocktail Bar – MEA
Botanical Bar – Cape Town, South Africa
Cause & Effect – Cape Town, South Africa
Mootee – Johannesburg, South Africa
Motel – Tel Aviv, Isreal

Best Bar Team - MEA
Central Station – Beirut, Lebanon
Coya – Dubai, UAE
House of Machines – Cape Town, South Africa
Imperial Craft Cocktail Bar – Tel Aviv
Lost & Found – Cyprus

Best Cocktail Bar - ASIA & PACIFIC
28 Hong Kong Street - Singapore
Above Board – Melbourne, Australia
Atlas - Singapore
Bar Orchard Ginza – Toyko, Japan
Bulletin Place – Sydney, Australia
Caretaker – Auckland, New Zealand
Native - Singapore
Operation Dagger - Singapore
Smoke & Mirrors - Singapore
Speak Low – Shanghai, China

Best High Volume Cocktail Bar - ASIA & PACIFIC
Eau-de-Vie – Melbourne, Australia
KOR Taipei - Taiwan
Molly – Canberra, Australia
Quinary - Hong Kong
Shady Pines Saloon – Sydney, Australia
The Barber Shop – Sydney, Australia
The Baxter Inn – Sydney, Australia
The Everleigh – Melbourne, Australia
The Gresham Bar – Queensland, New Zealand
The Lobo Plantation – Sydney, Australia

Best Restaurant Bar - A & P
Cassia – Auckland, New Zealand
Charlie Parker’s - Sydney, Australia
Cut by Wolfgang - Singapore
Hubert’s – Sydney, Australia
Bar Luca – Sydney, Australia
Maybe Frank – Sydney, Australia
NOLA Adelaide Whiskies and Craft Beers – Adelaide, Australia
Otto e Mezzo - Hong Kong
Sober Company – Shanghai, China
Zuma - Hong Kong

Best Hotel Bar - A & P
Bamboo Bar at the Mandarin Oriental- Bangkok, Thailand
Charles H at the Four Seasons- Seoul, South Korea
Eichardt's Bar at the Eichardt – Queenstown, New Zealand
Elephant Bar at the Raffles Hotel - Phnom Penh, Cambodia
EQUIS at the Four Seasons – Beijing, China
Lobster Bar at Island Shangri-La- Hong Kong
Manhattan Bar at Regent - Singapore
Pascale Bar and Grill at QT – Melbourne, Australia
The Ritz Carlton Bar & Lounge at The Ritz Carlton - Macau
Social Club Hotel de Arts - Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam

Best New Cocktail Bar - A & P
Caffe Fernet - Singapore
COA Hong Kong - Hong Kong
Duke of Clarence – Sydney, Australia
Employees Only – Hong Kong
EQUIS Four Seasons Beijing – Beijing, China
Jungle Bird – Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Origin Bar at Shangri-La Hotel - Singapore
The Old Man - Hong Kong
The Parasol & Swing Company – Auckland, New Zealand
Three X Co. – Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Best Bar Team A & P
Black Pearl – Melbourne, Australia
Manhattan Bar - Singapore
Maybe Frank – Sydney, Australia
Quinary - Hong Kong
Shady Pines Saloon – Sydney, Australia
Sober Company – Shanghai, China
Speak Low – Shanghai, China
The Baxter Inn – Sydney, Australia
The Gresham Bar – Brisbane, Australia
Tippling Club – Singapore

Best American Cocktail Bar - USA - East
Amor Y Amargo - New York, NY
Bar Goto - New York, NY
BarMini by Jose Andres - Washington, D.C.
BlackTail - New York, NY
Employees Only - Miami, FL
Mace - New York, NY
PDT - New York, NY
Pouring Ribbons - New York, NY
Proof - Charleston, SC
Ticonderoga Club – Atlanta, GA

Best High Volume Cocktail Bar - USA - East
Archipelago - Washington, D.C.
Bathtub Gin - New York, NY
Buffalo and Bergen - Washington, D.C.
Drink - Boston, MA
Jack Rose, Washington, D.C.
Porchlight - New York, NY
R House - Baltimore, MD
The Anderson - Miami, FL
The NoMad Bar - New York, NY, named Best American High Volume Cocktail Bar
Ward III - New York, NY

Best Restaurant Bar - USA East
27 Restaurant & Bar - Miami, FL
Alter - Miami, FL
Bastion - Nashville, TN
Gramercy Tavern - New York, NY
Kimball House - Atlanta, GA
Nightbell - Asheville, NC
No. 9 Park - Boston, MA
Silver Dollar - Louisville, KY
Teresa's Next Door - Wayne, PA
The Baldwin Bar - Woburn, MA

Best Hotel Bar - USA East
Analog at Hutton Hotel - Nashville, TN
Brothers and Sisters at The Line Hotel - Washington, D.C
Casimir’s Lounge at The Mansion - Savannah, GA
Covina at Roof Park South - New York, NY
Élevé at The Grand Bohemian Hotel - Charleston, SC
POV at The W - Washington, D.C
The Broken Shaker at The Freehand - Miami, FL, named Best American Hotel Bar
The Living Room at The Dewberry Hotel - Charleston, SC
The Roof at Park South - New York, NY
The Velvet Bar at the Hard Rock - Orlando, FL

Best New Cocktail Bar - USA East
Attaboy Nashville - Nashville, TN
Barely Disfigured - Brooklyn, NY
Blossom Bar - Brookline, MA
Death or Glory - Delray Beach, FL
Madrina's Bar - Gainesville, FL
Maydān - Washington, D.C.
The Aviary - New York, NY
The Edison - Orlando, FL
The Office NYC - New York, NY
The Pool Lounge - New York, NY

Best Bar Team - USA East
Bar Goto - New York, NY
Clover Club - Brooklyn, NY
Columbia Room - Washington, DC
Dante - New York, NY
Drink - Boston, MA
Kimball House - Atlanta, GA
Leyenda - Brooklyn, NY
PDT - New York, NY
Sweet Liberty - Miami, FL
The Dead Rabbit - New York, NY

Best Cocktail Bar - USA Central
Anvil - Houston, TX
Downstairs at The Esquire Tavern - San Antonio, TX
Lost Lake - Chicago, IL, named Best American Cocktail Bar
Juniper Tar - San Antonio, TX
Manifesto - Kansas City, MO
Planters House - St. Louis, MO
Porco Lounge and Tiki Room - Cleveland, OH
Scofflaw - Chicago, IL
The Aviary - Chicago, IL
The Office - Chicago – IL

Best High Volume Bar - USA Central Atomic Lounge - Birmingham, AL
Celeste - Chicago, IL
Eight Row Flint - Houston, TX
LBM - Lakewood, OH
Marvel Bar - Minneapolis, MN
Roosevelt Room - Austin, TX
Sportsman's Club - Chicago, IL
The Robin Room - Madison, WI
Three Dots and a Dash - Chicago, IL
Péché – Austin, TX

Best Restaurant Bar USA Central Bad Hunter - Chicago, IL
Balise - New Orleans, LA
Cherry Circle Room - Chicago, IL
Coltivare - Houston, TX
La Petite Grocery - New Orleans, LA
Meauxbar - New Orleans, LA
Sepia - Chicago, IL
Spoke & Steele - Indianapolis, IN
The Rieger - Kansas City, MO
Trattoria Stella - Traverse City, MI

Best Hotel Bar USA Central
Alto Bar at the Ace Hotel - New Orleans, LA
Broken Shaker at the Freehand, Chicago, IL
Compère Lapin at The Old No. 77 Hotel & Chandlery - New Orleans, LA
Midnight Rambler at The Joule - Dallas, TX
Sable Kitchen & Bar at The Palomar - Chicago, IL
Sternewirth Tavern at The Emma Hotel - San Antonio, TX
The Commons Club at the Virgin Hotel - Chicago, IL
The Driskill Bar at The Driskill Hotel – Austin, TX
The Iron Horse Hotel - Milwaukee, WI
The Living Room at The W - Minneapolis, MN

Best New Cocktail Bar USA Central
Academia Austin - Austin, TX
Beatnik - Chicago, IL
Better Luck Tomorrow - Houston, TX
Eugene's Monkey Bar & Grill - Mobile, AL
Golden Teardrops – Chicago, IL
LBM - Lakewood, OH
Ludlow Liquors - Chicago, IL
Nickel City - Austin, TX
Prairie School - Chicago, IL
ROCA Restaurant and Bar - Vicksburg, MS

Best Bar Team USA Central
Arbella - Chicago, IL
Bar Tonique - New Orleans, LA
Manifesto - Kansas City, MO
Midnight Rambler - Dallas, TX
Porco Lounge and Tiki Room - Cleveland, OH
Sportsman's Club - Chicago, IL
The Aviary - Chicago, IL
The Esquire Tavern - San Antonio, TX
Violet Hour - Chicago, IL
Vol. 39 - Chicago, IL

Best Cocktail Bar - USA West
ABV - San Francisco, CA
B&GC - Denver, CO
Bar Leather Apron, Honolulu, HI
False Idol, San Diego, CA
Pacific Cocktail Haven - San Francisco, CA
Rumba - Seattle, WA
Trick Dog - San Francisco, CA
Under Tow - Phoenix, AZ
Walker Inn - Los Angeles, CA
Williams & Graham - Denver, CO

Best High Volume Cocktail Bar USA West
Bitter & Twisted Cocktail Parlour - Phoenix, AZ
Harvard and Stone - Los Angeles, CA
Melrose Umbrella Co. - Los Angeles, CA
Occidental - Denver, CO
Pagan Idol - San Francisco, CA
Polite Provisions - San Diego, CA
The Double Standard - Oakland, CA
Oven & Shaker – Portland, OR
Zig Zag Café, Seattle, WA
Shady Lady, Sacramento, CA

Best Restaurant Bar USA West
Bar Agricole - San Francisco, CA
Clyde Common - Portland, OR, named Best American Restaurant Bar
Gwen - Los Angeles, CA
Hatchet Hall - Los Angeles, CA
Heartwood Provisions - Seattle, WA
Liholiho Yacht Club - San Francisco, CA
Nopa - San Francisco, CA
Otium - Los Angeles, CA
PABU - San Francisco, CA
Redbird - Los Angeles, CA

Best Hotel Bar - USA - West
Blue Hound Kitchen and Cocktails - Phoenix, AZ
Carbon Beach Club / Malibu Beach Inn - Malibu, CA
Charmaine’s at The Proper Hotel - San Francisco, CA
Grant Grill at the US Grant - San Diego, CA
Lehua Lounge at the Andaz - Wailea, HI
Libertine Social at The Mandalay - Las Vegas, NV
Mandarin Bar at Mandarin Oriental - Las Vegas, NV
The Dorsey - Las Vegas, NV
The Spare Room at The Roosevelt Hotel - Los Angeles, CA
YNK - Irvine, CA

Best New Cocktail Bar USA - West
Bibo Ergo Sum - Los Angeles, CA
Broken Shaker LA - Los Angeles, CA
Cold Drinks Bar - San Francisco, CA
Navy Strength - Seattle, WA, named Best New American Cocktail Bar
NoMad LA Gianinni Bar - Los Angeles, CA
Rudolph's Bar and Tea - Los Angeles, CA
Slipper Clutch - Los Angeles, CA
The Way Back - Denver, CO
True Laurel – San Francisco, CA
Lono – Los Angeles, CA

Best Bar Team USA - West
Accomplice Bar - Los Angeles, CA
Bitter & Twisted Cocktail Parlour - Phoenix, AZ
Bootlegger Tiki - Palm Springs, CA
Broken Shaker, Los Angeles, CA
Herbs & Rye - Las Vegas, NV
Libertine Social - Las Vegas, NV
Pacific Cocktail Haven - San Francisco, CA
Trick Dog - San Francisco, CA
Valkyrie - Tulsa, OK
Williams & Graham - Denver, CO

quote unquote -- St. Augustine

The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page. -- Attr. Augustine of Hippo

There are unexplored places yet.

You just have to get there.

Standing in a pit in the red soil of a mountaintop forest in northern Mozambique, Dr Simon Willcock was dirty but very excited. “Undisturbed forest is incredibly rare,” he said. “That is why we scaled a 125-metre-tall cliff with a pickaxe.” Willcock, from Bangor University in Wales, knew of no other rainforest in Africa that scientists can confidently say has not been disturbed by humans. “It’s a unique site in Africa,” he said, plunging the axe down into the chest-deep hole with a whump.

Like a villain’s fortress in an old James Bond movie, Mount Lico rises vertically from the land around it, the ancient centre of a volcano with the forest nestled in its crater. It was discovered by Dr Julian Bayliss, who examined satellite imagery looking for an undisturbed tropical rainforest. When he spotted Lico on Google Earth, he said, the forest on top “was isolated and appeared totally undisturbed”. With a smile, he added: “That makes it very exciting.”

The rest of the story: A ‘dream team’ of scientists scaled Mount Lico and found a wealth of new species. Mozambique: the secret rainforest at the heart of an African volcano by Jeff Barbee (Guardian).