Who knew there would ever be a fight over Long Island Iced Tea? One of my favorite drinks when you’ve had a bad day and need to erase it quickly, this beverage of regret has caused a war between New York bartenders and the City of Kingsport, TN.
I knew the competition was happening. Then I got this press release. Here’s a snippet:
Long Island Bartenders participated in the final round of the Long Island Iced Tea Challenge, a challenge to determine the origins of the famed Long Island Ice Tea drink between Kingsport, Tenn and Long Island, NY. They are calling an investigation by the City of Kingsport Mayor John Clark, after judges chosen to determine the original “Long Island Iced Tea” winner were possibly rigged by Visit Kingsport, the tourism entity associated with the Tennessee bartending crew. Butch Yamali, bartender and owner of Hudson’s on the Mile in Freeport, NY, has called the competition a possible fraud, after his team was excluded from location negotiations and had no say in judge selection. Long Island bartenders traveled to Washington DC to compete against the City of Kingsport Tourism Bureau. The Long Island bar staff is saying that the contest was null and void and that the Kingsport team possibly wasted tens of thousands of tourism dollars on a booze trip for a fake contest.
I get y’all are upset. This is your livelihood (?) and who wouldn’t want the L.I. crown? But seriously. There are so many things that truly need investigating that this seems downright ri-damn-diculous.
On that note, I’m going to grab a non-fancy pre-made Long Island that I love—the Captain’s Long Island.
Red solo cup up!
Editor-in-chief Kathy Vogel shares what's on her mind... through her fingers.