Certain items naturally go together. Peanut butter and jelly. Captain and Tennille. Gays and vodka. To celebrate those perfect pairings, Brightest Young Things brought together Smirnoff vodka and the District’s leading gay innovators for a night to remember (well, actually…the night is pretty much a blur thanks to Smirnoff).
Nestled in the rooftop bar of Tabaq on U Street last Wednesday were the photographers and contributors to our BYGays project along with thirty gay and lesbian leaders in the arts, politics, journalism and nightlife. Smirnoff provided the alcohol and four bartenders, who each competed in several rounds to see which bartenders could create the most interesting Smirnoff vodka cocktails for the party guests, who then voted in each round of the competition.
As if anything could be better than an evening of free Smirnoff vodka, the night also provided an opportunity for guests to connect with other innovators and opinion leaders (including representatives from Facebook, TheNewGay.net, numerous nightlife parties like Shift and Maison, leading press outlets, and representatives of the performing arts community). The setting fostered a salon-like atmosphere where attendees could swirl a Smirnoff cocktail, trade inspiration, promote their own work and discuss the development of new nightlife and arts initiatives in Washington. While guests enthusiastically collaborated with other leaders on cultural discussions, equally enthusiastic collaborations also occured happened during the balloting rounds for Smirnoff cocktails as guests discussed which flavor pairings and ingredients went best with the vodka to create the perfect drink.