One of FruHubs' 87 brothers was in town recently, and The Frugal Hostess made the mistake of suggesting a trip to the Sweetwater Brewery. On a Saturday. When it was 13,000 degrees hot. Duh. After sweating their behinds off for an hour or so on the brewery "tour" (stand in one place, turn in a circle, and consider yourself toured), TFH suggested a more pleasant but equally boozy diversion.
The group traveled to Empire State South, a restaurant on the ground floor of an office building in Midtown Atlanta. The food is great there, what The Frugal Hostess would call Southern Steampunk Cuisine, and FruHo especially digs their old school cocktails made from fresh herbs and magical elixirs. Almost as cool is the secret bocce court located in a courtyard between buildings. Despite having spent three months in bocce's American headquarters (Napa, CA), TFH isn't a skilled player, but the boys were ready to get down.
|This is an old-fashioned, a la Don Draper.|
Because of the way the buildings are organized around the bocce court, there was a lot of shade and plenty of refreshing breeze flowing. The Adirondack chairs were comfy, and the drinks were cold (if expensive and, at least on one occasion, mixed with surliness and disdain). The ladies sat and watched while the gentlemen threw their heavy balls around. Ha.
|Seriously, bocce balls are heavy.|
There was a wedding party taking pictures in the courtyard, and a man in snappy pajama pants/wife beater ensemble wandered up to take a picture with the bride. Random, yes? Turns out, he was a member of Bone Thugs-N-Harmony. Those dudes are all called Something Bone, and FruHo thinks this one was Flesh-N-Bone, but she can't be sure because their Wikipedia entry if confusing as hell. No matter. They all came out to the bocce court to drink giant glasses of Hennessy and talk, because their scheduled show was cancelled, according to one hanger-on who was gulping down his glass full before hitting the bed after a 36-hour period of wakefulness. TFH's cell phone pictures of this craziness are too blurry to even see, much less tell who is who, so you'll just have to trust.
|Photo shoot getting set up behind FruHubs and FruHubs' brother #87.|
In summation, the Empire State South bocce court is a great place to hang out in the early evening when you are sweaty and thirsty and eager for brushes with both fame and nuptial bliss.