If You’re Ever at the Roosevelt Hotel….

Had a really fun job today photographing Edwin Cruz’s portrait and vintage barware for The Tasting Panel Magazine. Our location was The Spare Room (a lounge and BOWLING ALLEY!) in the historic Roosevelt Hotel in Hollywood. That area on Hollywood Boulevard is one of my old stomping grounds; I was the Managing Editor and Features Editor at The Advocate (right across the street) in the 80s. My office faced that huge neon “Roosevelt Hotel” sign, and I remember turning off my lights early in the winter and just letting the neon fill the room. It was wonderful, it was kinda magical.

Edwin won a recentmixologist competition event to benefit Covenant House in Los Angeles (my client, The Tasting Panel, was the trade media sponsor). Though the competition was very stiff (as were, of course, some of the drinks), Edwin beat nine other competitors with Sherry Dream, his own creation using Gonzalez Byass Sherries.

That was a fun event to shoot, but shooting Edwin one on one (and on his home turf) was a blast. He was a great sport and had a rad collection of vintage barware that I also got to shoot. Bonus: I got to lay belly down on the lane to get some close ups. I don’t why that’s a bonus, but laying down on a bowling lane is just something that you don’t get to do every day.

While I was shooting Edwin’s portrait, I told him to sit on his semi-circle sofa and put his arms up, and for some reason I thought of “Scarface,” which is kind of ridiculous, but I mentioned it to Edwin, and this photo is his Scarface laugh. HA!

I think you had to kind of be there, but take my word for it, it’s a rad place and if you’re ever in the area, stop by for a few games and a round of fancy drinks (concocted, of course, by Edwin, who happens to work at the Roosevelt.

Edwin Cruz, award-winning mixologist at The Roosevelt Hotel

Edwin Cruz, award-winning mixologist at The Roosevelt Hotel

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