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Friday, December 22, 2017

Tales of the Cocktail may be sold to Solomon family, reports New York Times

Posted By on Fri, Dec 22, 2017 at 4:22 PM

Tales of the Cocktail founder Ann Tuennerman addresses the crowd at the Spirited Awards during Tales of the Cocktail.
  • Tales of the Cocktail founder Ann Tuennerman addresses the crowd at the Spirited Awards during Tales of the Cocktail.

New Orleans' Solomon family has signed a nonbinding letter of intent to buy Tales of the Cocktail from founder Ann Tuennerman and her husband Paul Tuennerman, according to a report from Robert Simonson in The New York Times.

The Tuennermans — known as "Mr. and Mrs. Cocktail" — had built Tales from a small summer gathering of cocktail lovers 15 years ago to the industry's premier convention, which takes over thousands of hotel rooms and bars in the city every July. During Mardi Gras 2017, however, Ann Tuennerman rode in the Zulu parade wearing the krewe's traditional blackface, and reactions to a photo of her, along with what some saw as racially insensitive explanations from both Tuennermans, led to her stepping down from Tales in early March. In September, the Tuennermans stepped down permanently.

According to The New York Times story, Gary Solomon Jr. began talking to the Tuennermans last month about taking over the festival. "If the transaction proceeds, the convention will run as scheduled in July," the Times said, "something many people had begun to doubt."

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