Archived Story

Hormel home was popular social circle

Published 9:35am Sunday, October 13, 2013

By Holly Johnson

Hormel Historic Home

B&J bartender, Adam Wradislavsky, will defend his Best Bartender title on Wednesday, Oct. 23, at the Hormel Historic Home.

At the first event in October of 2012, Adam won by a slim margin over the other competitors, two of whom will compete again in 2013.

The contestants are judged in eight categories including Best Signature Drink, Best Martini, Wine Bottle Opening, and Best Showmanship. Our field of judges will evaluate each bartender on a 10-point scale. The People’s Choice winner is awarded 20 points to their overall total so the audience voice will be heard.

This kind of event would probably have been a great attraction in the home of Jay C. Hormel, now Gerard Academy, as from 1958 until 1963, it was operated by Geordie Hormel as King’s Wood.

Geordie, Jay’s oldest son and George and Lillian’s first grandchild, acquired his childhood home after Jay’s death in 1954. After years of planning, he transformed the home into what he believed would be one of the nation’s leading showplaces among hotels and restaurants, and apparently it was.  The house was completely redecorated and opened on July 17, 1958, as a thriving venue for social gatherings and luxury lodging.

According to a historical record of the property, “Echos du Passe,” which was compiled by Sharon Jenson: “the restaurant featured the finest French cuisine and employed 50 people. It could accommodate up to 300 guests nightly in the three dining rooms.”

Geordie wrote a welcome letter to his guests that shared his passion for providing the highest quality service to all who visited. His closing line says “Please feel free to enjoy your dinner leisurely and to spend the evening pleasantly… cool off around our pool on hot evenings — visit the Hawaiian Room and enjoy the entertainment we attempt to furnish.” Oftentimes the entertainment was Geordie, himself, at the piano.

I am not exactly sure what the Hawaiian Room was, but my guess is it would have been a great venue for a bartender competition.  Please join the HHH on Oct. 23 for some King’s Wood type entertainment.

The food won’t be from a French menu but it will be popular fare from Torge’s Live.  The music won’t be by Geordie Hormel, but an Austin favorite, Jesse Smith, will perform. Cover charge is only $5 and you will get to choose Mower County’s next Best Bartender.

Social Concerns

Oct. 15

Randy Kramer, Certified Financial Planner will be presenting on Responsible Charitable Giving.  Explained in plain English, he will discuss who, what, when, where, how and how much — issues often surrounding charitable giving.

The event is free and coffee and snack will be provided.  Please give us a call to let us know you are planning to attend. 507-433-4243.

Mower County’s Best Bartender Contest

Oct. 23

Doors open at 5, Competition at 6

$5 cover charge

Halloween costume dance for kids

2:30 to 5 p.m. Oct. 27, with costume judging at 4 p.m.

In conjunction with the Mower County 4-H organization we are hosting this fun event for kids up to 12 years old.  Judging will be done in three age categories and prizes will be awarded by the 4-H group.  D.J. Sam Deyo will provide the music.  Cost is $1 for each family member. Snacks will be available for sale.

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