Fellows for the Manhattan Cocktail Classic Program, to be held May 13-17, have been announced. The Fellows are bartenders from around the globe who were invited to become a part of a competitive team for the program's events.
• Cointreau is sponsoring Todd Appel of Piranha Bros, Logan Lavachek of Sepia and Duchamp, and Daniel de Oliveira of GT Fish and Oyster, all Chicago; Meghan Balser of Pegu Club and Joann Spiegel of Mercury Bar, New York City; David Delaney Jr. of The Citizen, Worcester, Mass.; Rhiannon Enlil of Cure, New Orleans; Erin Harris and Dylan Regan of Jimmy's Restaurant, Aspen, Colo.; Jamie Kilgore of Niche and Ted Kilgore of Taste, St. Louis; Michael Patrick McSorley of Tavern Law, Needle and Thread and Tini Bigs, Seattle; Nishantha C. Nepulangoda of Blowfish Restaurant and Sake Bar, Toronto; and Timo Janse of Door 74, Amsterdam.
• The New York International Spirits Competition is sponsoring Payman Bahmani of Louis 649 and Bar & Books, New York City; and Jake Sher of Mix @ The Crowne Plaza Westchester, White Plains, N.Y.
• Belvedere is sponsoring Zahra Bates of Providence LA, Los Angeles.
• Milagro Tequila is sponsoring Dean Hurst of SideBern's, Tampa, Fla.
• Pyrat is sponsoring Naomi Schimek of the Spare Room at the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel, Los Angeles.
Semi-finalists have been announced for the National Restaurant Association’s “Star of the Bar" Competition to be held May 22 in Chicago. Competing are Sean Conner of Whiskey Cake Kitchen & Bar in Plano, Texas; Emily George of Cameron Mitchell Restaurants in Granville, Ohio; Jamie Koeppler of Madisons in Madison, Wis.; Robert Leavey of The Broadmoor in Colorado Springs, Colo.; Dante LoPresti of Double A in Chicago; and Emilio Tiburcio of The Cosmopolitan in Las Vegas. The winner will receive a $5,000 cash prize.
Justin Noel, head bartender at cocktail bar 1534 in Manhattan’s Nolita neighborhood, took the top award at Caorunn’s Big Apple Cocktail Competition. The contest was part of the festivities for the official launch of Caorunn Small Batch Scottish Gin. Justin called his winning drink the Caledonia Club and will represent Caorunn at “Tales of the Cocktail” to be held July 20-24 in New Orleans. Ingredients include Caorunn gin, fresh pressed apple juice, yellow Chartreuse, lemon juice, orange-blossom honey, Hero’s red currant preserves, a sprig of dill and egg white.
Justin Noel, head bartender at 1534 in Manhattan, won the Caorunn Big Apple Cocktail Competition.
The United States Bartenders' Guild (USBG) has announced the first annual "Emotion In A Glass" Competition presented by Russian Standard Vodka. The winner will receive national coverage in Food & Wine magazine and a trip for two to Russia, which includes a visit to the Russian Standard Vodka distillery in St. Petersburg. Additionally, the "Consumer Choice" winner, selected by Russian Standard Vodka Facebook fans, will have the opportunity to win a trip to Tales of the Cocktail in July. Submissions are being accepted through May 5. To compete, visit USBG.org.
Evan Hawkins of Atlanta was crowned National Champion of the 2011 USBG Drinks & Ink Competition, presented by Tuaca. This not-so-usual take on a bartender competition combined the intersecting cultures of bartenders and tattoos. Bartenders were judged on their Tuaca bold-shot recipes and the overall craftsmanship of their tattoos. Hawkins captured his first national bartender competition by beating out eight other finalists from the around the country to win a Tuaca photo spread in Inked magazine. Hawkins won the competition with his Pura Vida bold-shot recipe and a tattoo featuring a sugar skull underscored with the words "Pura Vida."
1.5 oz Tuaca
0.5 oz lemon juice
0.25 oz of agave nectar
3 dashes of orange flower water
0.5 oz of cream (half/half)
Shake and strain top with homemade lemon-vanilla soda, add a vanilla-bean straw and a sugar skull-candy garnish.
Jared Brown and Ansitatia Miller have announced the launch of ebook versions of their Mixellany publishing venture, www.mixellany.com. The first two offerings from their catalog are their own “Champagne Cocktails” as well as “The Cocktailian Chronicles, Volume One” by gaz regan and illustrations by Stuffy Schmitt. Both are available in ePub format at a 33 percent discount. The rest of the catalog, plus new publications, soonwill be available in electronic format.
Smuggler’s Cove, San Francisco’s home of premium rums and exotic cocktails and winner of the 2011 Nightclub & Bar Awards Cocktail Lounge of the Year, is launching Triumvirate Rum, made to celebrate the first Smuggler's Cove customers to drink 200 rums. The rum is a “very limited-edition hand-crafted artisan rum” from House Spirits in Portland, Ore. The bar house-fermented a batch of 100% organic molasses from Barbados, then rested the resulting distillate in a used whiskey cask. After it was tasted at a higher proof in a traditional Daiquiri, the rum was bottled at 105 proof so its bold and vibrant flavor could shine through in cocktails.
New York City landmark Grand Central Terminal’s Campbell Terrace re-opened with a new cocktail menu. Signature cocktails included the Marmalade Sour (Ketel One Orange, orange marmalade and fresh lemon juice), the Elderflower Grape (St-Germain elderflower liqueur, fresh muddled grapes, bitters and sparkling wine), and the Polo Match (Bourbon, muddled cucumber, vanilla syrup and fresh lime juice). Other infused Sparkling Cocktails include the Blood Orange (Blood Orange puree and Combier orange liqueur, topped with sparkling wine) and the Spicy Mango Lime (Mango puree, fresh lime juice and sparkling wine, garnished with a chili powder and sugar rim).
Bacardi has introduced an all-in-one shaker, which allows a user to muddle, shake and pour in one step. The shaker features a stainless-steel finish, a comfort grip, and a builtin muddler. Acrylic nubs ejnsure the ingredients release their full flavor for optimal taste. The shaker increase efficiency behind the bar by increasing the speed at which drinks can be made and served.