Drinking about Rationing: Garden to Glass with Eat Local New Orleans

Garden to Glass celebrates WWII history and local New Orleans food and drink.

One of our favorite annual programs at The National WWII Museum is Garden to Glass. For several years, we’ve partnered with Eat Local New Orleans, a nonprofit dedicated to celebrating New Orleans Food and Drink culture, to bring in bartenders, distilleries, and restaurateurs from across the Crescent City for a single challenge: craft a uniquely tasty drink using only what would have been available in WWII-era Victory Gardens. These items are likely standards in your own kitchen: basil, thyme, tomato, and carrots, but with a boozy twist. And, every year, we have a great time sipping their entries in The American Sector Restaurant & Bar, having some Chef-produced snacks, and voting on our favorites.

But, more importantly, this program allows the Museum to celebrate both the history of rationing and New Orleans bar culture, while collaborating with stalwarts of our community. New Orleans is a place like no other and our food and drink culture is a world unto itself. We love being able to partner with cool organizations like Eat Local New Orleans and the Eat Local Challenge, to do really amazing things.

Our friend, Brynn Comeaux, Marketing Director and Events Coordinator at Eat Local New Orleans, had this to say about our partnership:

“Our annual Garden to Glass Cocktail Contest is one of the most beloved events of the year for participants and organizers alike. It’s been wonderful to see how both The National WWII Museum, The American Sector & Restaurant, and the Eat Local Challenge have evolved. As the Museum has grown, so has the number of local distillers and we have come a long way from our first event on a small patio. In celebration of 10 years of the Eat Local Challenge we look forward to being able to gather again, until then we’re with all of our loyal participants in spirit and in spirits.”

The following recipes are the winners from past Garden to Glass programs. We hope you enjoy (responsibly!).


2016 Winner—Cathead Distillery:

"Blues Cat”

• One part Cathead Vodka,

• Muddled blueberries,

• lemon,

• simple syrup (here’s a recipe—it’s easy!)

• basil—

muddle solids, add vodka, mix, and enjoy.


2017 Winner—Cathead Distillery:

“Delta Summer"

• One part Cathead Honeysuckle Vodka

• One Part Homemade Louisiana Strawberry Shrub (here is how to make shrub!)

• Lime

• Mint

• Add Vodka and shrub, mix, garnish with lime and mint and enjoy!


2018 Winner—Seven Three Distillery:

“Calliope Hummingbird”

• One part Gentilly Gin

• Muddled blackberries

• Muddled watermelon

• Mix and add ice

• Garnished with a Creole tomato


2019 Winner-- by Seven Three Distillery:

“Nature’s Apothecary”

• One part Seven Three Distillery’s Black Pearl Rum

• Basil Simple Syrup

• Roasted Garlic Simple Syrup

• Lime

• Add ice

• Fill with Soda Water

For more information on the ways we work with and within the Greater New Orleans Area, check out our Community Engagement webpage.