The Date: April 16, 2008
The Venue: North Cabana at the Maritime Hotel, New York City
The Talent: DJs Holy Ghost and Drop the Lime; Bands The Blow and Yacht
The Crowd: Young crowd (presumably a lot of Yacht fans) that included a few Anheuser-Busch
managers and Cornerstone employees, mainly decked out in hipster chic.
The Food: Waiters came around and served an assortment of finger foods: barbecue ribs and shrimp, lamb chops, coleslaw, grilled corn on the cob and chicken skewers. Or as some called it, "upscale barbecue."
The Drinks: What else? Bud Light Lime, Bud Light and bottled water.
Like the hepcat that we are, Freeloader arrived at the Maritime Hotel in the West Village at 6:08 p.m. -- and was informed that we were five minutes early to the start of the party. So much for showing up "fashionably late." Undeterred, Freeloader came back 20 minutes later to enjoy free Bud Light Limes, and the unofficial arrival of spring.
The North Cabana -- normally decorated in blue and white -- was decked out in lime green for this event. Partygoers lounged on soft green cushions surrounded by images of limes on flat-screen TVs, coasters lay around on wooden tables near bowls of limes, while buckets of Bud Light Lime chilled in ice. See a pattern yet? And lest you forget the name of the beer, the limes had the logo branded onto them.
DJs Holy Ghost and the aptly named Drop the Lime spun a variety of funk. The room was low-lit with plenty of candles around to create the desired tropical effect. We're wondering what kind of connections Anheuser-Busch has, given it got a near perfect night for its event. A cool breeze wafted through the patio on a cloudless, 70-degree day, the first after a stretch of primarily cold, blustery days.
As for the beer itself, Freeloader found it to be exactly as advertised: a crisp, refreshing light beer that seems perfect for summer. It might not win any North American Beer Awards, but it's in the vein of a Corona Light with a lime or a Miller Chill.
After chatting up a few friendly Cornerstone PR employees, Freeloader just hung out and surveyed the scene. The party began to fill up around 7:45, when Yacht, a two-person band from Portland, Ore., came onstage to perform.
Being a Big Apple boy, Freeloader was not familiar with the West Coast band, or its predecessor, The Blow. But we thought the beats were cool, although we were less impressed by overly repetitive lyrics, hypnotic dancing that recalled the Peanuts Christmas special and generally muddied sound. No matter -- the crowd seemed to enjoy it as they nodded their heads to the music. (A more extensive review of the Yacht show can be read on AdAge's music blog, Songs for Soap.)