Shake It Up! Competition Produces Great Cocktails

Up-and-coming mixologists demonstrated two key attributes at this year’s Shake It Up! competition at the Nightclub & Bar Convention and Trade Show last month in Las Vegas: (1) Their understanding and growing mastery of mixology and (2) their ability to use that knowledge base and their instincts to create an original recipe on the fly using a secret ingredient — passion fruit — only revealed to them just before the competition began.  

Sponsored by Southern Wine & Spirits of America and judged by a panel of its nationally respected mixologists, the competition captivated onlookers as the entrants quickly set about the task of building a noteworthy drink. The winners and their respective drinks were:

1st Place - $5,000
Victoria Damato-Moran

Passionate Woman
1 bar spoon fresh passion fruit 
1 ½ ounces SKYY Passion Fruit Vodka
1 ounce Aperol
½ ounce X Rated Fusion
3 ounces fresh ruby red grapefruit juice
½ ounce fresh lemon juice
Grated nutmeg

Build, shake and strain into a chilled cocktail glass.

2nd Place - $2,500
Natalia Luglio

1 ½ ounces Tequila Patron Añejo
½ ounce Malibu Passion Fruit
½ ounce sugar syrup
2 fresh strawberries
1 passion fruit
Juice of ½ pressed lime

Muddle the strawberries with passion fruit, sugar syrup and lime juice. Add the rest of the ingredients. Shake it well with ice. Pour into chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with a strawberry

3rd Place – 1,500
Max Solano

New Orleans Sunset
2 ounces Bulleit Bourbon
¾ ounce Luxardo Maraschino
1 ounce fresh blood orange juice
½ ounce rock candy syrup
1 teaspoon fresh passion fruit
1 egg white
Garnish: blood orange wheel

Double-strain and serve chilled and straight-up. Garnish with blood orange wheel.

4th Place – $700
Columbine Quillen

Epic Absintheticity
1 ounce passion fruit
½ ounce blackberry puree
1 ½ ounces simple syrup
1 ounce lime juice
½ ounce Pernod Absinthe
1 ½ ounce Navan

Shake and serve up in a cocktail glass.

5th Place - $300.00
Juan Alvarez

Passion Basket

1 ½ ounces Pama Liqueur
¾ ounce Myers’s Rum
Pineapple juice
Blood orange
Passion fruit

Muddle passion fruit, blood orange and pineapple pieces. Pour all ingredients into shaker, shake hard and strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with raspberry, rosemary and/or passion fruit.

For more coverage of the Nightclub & Bar Convention and Trade Show, see the May issue of Nightclub & Bar.


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