Last night, the Manhattan Cocktail Classic kicked off with plenty of pomp and circumstance at the annual MCC Gala, which took over four floors of the New York Public Library. In addition to endless cocktails from some of the drink slingers in the game—Leo Robitschek from the Nomad pouring Negronis, Allen Katz of New York Distilling Co. making gimlets—there were plenty of over-the-top novelties to gawk at around every corner: Dancers waltzing above the crowd on stilts, flapper-era crooners, women with billowing dresses that doubled as tables full of chocolate, and walls covered in snacks.

The crowd was dressed to impress—with a few ladies and gents dressed to scandalize—as they partied amid ancient tomes, soaring ceilings, and portraits of old white men. After all, when else do you get to party in a library? The only thing that would have made it better would have been a surprise projection on the library facade of Kanye’s new song.

Click through the gallery above to see photos from inside the Manhattan Cocktail Classic Gala.