Bartender Paul Gustings to be roasted at Tiki Tolteca on May 21

By Laura McKnight, | The Times-Picayune

You may have taken shots with bartender Paul Gustings.

But here’s your chance to take a shot at him.

Gustings, veteran New Orleans bartender and professional curmudgeon, will serve as the target during the first in a series of comedic roasts planned at Tiki Tolteca.

The roast of Gustings begins at 10 p.m. May 21 at the tiki bar, on the second floor of Felipe’s Taqueria in the French Quarter.

Maxton Kennedy, bar manager of Tiki Tolteca, said the idea, modeled off televised Comedy Central roasts, is to gather other well-respected bartenders to collectively poke fun at Gustings.

“He’s one of the most respected members of our bartending community,” Kennedy said. “Everyone loves him — and loves to make fun of him.”

The event includes 15-percent discounts on drinks and a special $4 Gustings Punch concocted by Kennedy.

The roast forms the first in a series, Kennedy said, as well as a last hurrah before Tiki Tolteca closes in June for major renovations. The bar is scheduled to reopen in July with a kitchen serving Polynesian and South American-inspired dishes and a more tiki-ified look that includes a tiki hut over the bar.

Kennedy said he hopes to reopen the bar with another roast.

“I have other people in mind who need to be roasted,” Kennedy said.

Admission to the roast is free, and audience members who know Gustings are welcome to join in the fun, Kennedy said.

But watch out, because Gustings gets a chance to retort.

So far, bartenders Chris MacMillan with Kingfish and Nick Detrich with Cane and Table have signed on to roast Gustings, who currently mixes his masterpieces at Broussard'sEmpire Bar.

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