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Meet: The Drink and Learn Experience. Food and Drink aficionado and historian Elizabeth Pearce has debuted a new series of interactive cocktail presentations that entertain and educate with tales concerning the Big Easy’s rich network of interwoven social and libation histories. The Cocktail Tour (Dec. 27, 28, 30 and Jan. 3, 4, 10 and 11) is a walking tour through the city’s cocktail history, while the Drink and Learn Experience (Dec. 26, 2 p.m., Broussard’s) offers a cocktail history class in a bar. Tickets are $50 each and include four drinks. The next three available dates for the tour are December 26 at 2 PM, December 30 at 3 PM, and January 3 at 5 PM.

We can all use more history, right?

Eat: 12 months of food from all across the South. Southern food personalities, writers, and entrepreneurs Matt and Ted Lee (commonly referred to as the Lee Brothers) offer a year-long Southern Food-of-the-Month club. Each month, recipients will receive a box packed with various southern specialities. The contents of each package will be a surprise (points for the intrigue element), but you can expect everything from the Lee Brothers’ own peach preserves to stoneground grits from an 18th century mill in North Carolina; a boil-your-own-peanuts kit to Cheerwine soda. $330 for 12 months, includes ground shipping. They ship until the 24th too, so if you want to gift this, there’s still a chance to get it to where it needs to be by Christmas.

Drink: The Buttered Buddha at Lucky Rooster. As we near Christmas, you are running out of time to excuse your butter and booze reverse cleanse diet. With only five days left, you’ve got to start doubling down. Enter: hot buttered rum. Lucky Rooster’s rendition of the classic ($8)– comprised of : Laird’s Apple Jack, sweet potato syrup, all spice dram (whiskey), and a pat of Plugra butter — is well worth the belly real estate.

Read: Days and Nights in the Dreamy City. Author and editor Mary Fitzpatrick and film location manager, producer, and scriptwriter Virginia McCollam have just released the third and final book of the Preservation Resource Center trilogy, which includes Life in an Epic City (2006) and New Orleans Favorite Shotguns (2007). This volume is location focused, detailing a diverse sample of New Orleanians favorite spots throughout the city, at all times of day. Hear from over a hundred voices — everyone from John Goodman to the former powder room attendant at Brennan’s; explore places ranging from an all-night, kayak-up coffee shop to a hundred year bar with gourmet eats. You can purchase the book here for $25; proceeds benefit the Preservation Resource Center of New Orleans.

This Saturday, the 21st, at 2 PM, Octavia Books hosts a discussion and book signing of Days and Nights… with Fitzpatrick and McCollam. The event is free and open to the public.

Gift: A ‘leased’ goat, cow, sheep, or various fruit and nut trees. Most of us have said it: ‘You’re gift is on its way’. In reality, the gift is not only not on its way, the gift does not exist. I don’t blame you — life gets hectic and your forget to buy a few gifts. This year when you promise the gifts are on their way, mean it.

Rent Mother Nature offers an eco-friendly animal/plant leasing program that supports sustainable agricultural and farming practices, while also allowing leasers to enjoy all natural products yielded by the leased animal or tree: brie or cheddar from a cow roaming in the Vermont countryside, a custom wool blanket from a sheep in Merrimac Valley (MA), jars of wild honey, a bag of Costa Rican cocoa. Leasers also receive a lease certificate, progress reports, and photos of the animal or plant they sponsor. Leases start at $49.95.

Chelsea Lee is the associate editor of NolaVie. Email comments to her at


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