Pasadena kicked off a six-week long celebration to commemorate the 100th birthday of native daughter, Julia Child. It began on her birthday, which was August 15, with a citywide Julia Child Cocktail Party and costume contest. Many outstanding restaurants have been preparing special dishes from her recipes. The citywide cocktail party also kicked off Sip-tember, a cocktail competition. Local restaurants have created special drinks and invited restaurant patrons to vote for the tastiest concoctions.
It would have been fun and prohibitively expensive for us to attend every commemorative event. We would not be able to afford dinner for even one of us at any of the participating restaurants, but it seems like too much fun to miss entirely. Plus, I adore Julia Child. My mother watched her television show and cooked with her wonderful Descoware cookware. When we visited the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History in Washington, D.C., a few years ago, Julia Child’s kitchen was one of the highlights for me.
We have chosen to attend the cocktail bracket challenge finals. The four final cocktails will be served at a live event, and the attendees will vote for the champion. The $15 ticket (less than the price of a movie ticket) includes all the drink tastings as well as food from some of Pasadena’s best restaurants. During the last four weeks I have been assigned small mystery shops on the weekends. I have evaluated refrigerators, washers, dryers, 3-D televisions, coffee, and grocery stores. Since I never know when I will get a mystery shop, I never include it in my household budget. Usually I just deposit those checks into savings, but I really wanted to participate in this unique event in our own city and thanks to my mystery shops, now I can do it without feeling guilty!