Browsing Tag

Cocktail Competition



August 17, 2011

The 5th Annual Greater Kansas City Bartending Competition
By Francine Cohen

Kansas City on the radar again this week. Suddenly we’re noticing something magical happening in this Midwestern town from killer restaurants ( to a burgeoning cocktail festival that, on August 21st, marks its fifth year; behold, the 5th Annual Greater Kansas City Bartending Competition.

Set in the heartland where cattle is as important as cocktails, a whole new drinks fest is on the rise. Though the name belies a single event, don’t be fooled. This is not just some one night wonder competition that’s here and gone. The 5th Annual Greater Kansas City Bartending Competition is a week-long celebration of a lovingly crafted drinks culture that keeps pace with the rest of the country.

Ryan Maybee, the bartender/restaurateur behind Manifesto ( and festival co-founder, shares a bit about his brainchild for his hometown that next year will bear the name Paris of the Plains Cocktail Fest in honor of the nickname bestowed upon Kansas City during the Jazz Age by journalist Edward Morrow. He notes, “We’re branding it next year to indicate that it’s a festival and not just a competition. We think it’s great for Kansas City and for the industry. This year the competition itself will happen Sunday, August 21st; it starts at 7:00 p.m. and goes until 10:00 and throughout the evening food will be served and we’ve got live music and burlesque. But the week of that event – starting the prior Monday – there are going to be cocktail parties and tastings going on all around town. It will actually culminate with the competition.”

The competition features 13 contestants from Kansas City, and nearby cities Continue Reading…



June 30, 2011

Centennial Macchu Pisco Competition Deadline is today, June 30th

By Francine Cohen

Bet you didn’t know that 2011 is the 100th anniversary of the rediscovery of Machu Picchu by American explorer, Hiram Bingham. Us either; until the good folks at Macchu Pisco told us this interesting fact.

Even more interesting was learning that Macchu Pisco has partnered with the Peruvian government, Peru’s national airline Avianca Taca, and Orient-Express to create a cocktail competition unlike most others.

More than just a cocktail competition, this spirited adventure celebrates the culinary culture of Peru – from drink to food and their origins. Lizzie Asher, President of Macchu Pisco LLC, comments, “While we toast to one Peruvian treasure being re-discovered by an American, likewise we can say that Peruvian Pisco is being put on the map thanks to bartenders who embody Hiram Bingham’s spirit of adventure.”

After traveling to Boston to judge their local competition this past Monday (a big round of applause to Boston’s winner, Naomi Levy of Eastern Standard Kitchen & Drinks thanks to an invitation from the Macchu Pisco team (including sister Melanie Asher who is the founder of the company and the brand’s master distiller) we know that the spirit of adventure needed for this competition is different than your normal approach.

So, let’s see, how can we explain it to you so fully that you’ll want to enter? Well, this one’s national (yes, we know, so are some others). This one allows every competitor to present their drink and describe it to the judges (yes, yes, we know, other competitions have that element too). This one has prizes for: the best tasting cocktail (uh, huh, we know, same old, same old); most creative/relevant to the topic (hmmmm, getting a little different here, aren’t we?); and takes presentation into consideration (tip – invest in pretty glassware, judges like pretty glassware). The Centennial competition is judged by both Continue Reading…



April 14, 2010

Cocktail Competition Gives Back To The Planet

This just in from Aisha Sharpe, who, along with partner Willy Shine, runs cocktail consultancy Contemporary Cocktails …Sharpe announces,“Willy and I have set up a company supporting charities for the global good called Cocktail for a Cause.

Their initial effort to replenish the planet that is mined for the products poured at the bar is tied into the 40th anniversary of Earth Day. But Sharpe and Shine know that while it’s noble to try and fix the world a drink at a time they can’t do it alone and so they’ve partnered with like-minded spirit producers Carter and Courtney Reum of VeeV Sharpe explains, “For the month of April we have teamed up with VeeV to help them reach their goal of planting 10,000 trees in India.”

According to Shine, the association with VeeV and Contemporary Cocktails has a long and deep history and the two companies are eager to enlist the help of anyone and everyone who fancies themselves a mixologist and sees themselves steward of the earth. Getting involved is easy, just create a cocktail using VeeV and fresh, seasonal ingredients and submit it on the Contemporary Cocktails Facebook page!/contemporarycocktails?ref=ts. VeeV has agreed to plant five trees for every cocktail recipe submitted.

Cocktails will be judged by fellow Facebook users, and on May 3rd the top three winners will be decided. Each of these winners is gifted with a free trip to Tales of the Cocktail (hotel and airfare).

To plant some trees, and submit your VeeV cocktails, visit the Contemporary Cocktails Facebook Page.



April 14, 2010

Tax day is the deadline for entries into the Milagro USBG Tales of the Cocktail 2010 competition
By Francine Cohen

Just like taxes, but much much tastier, the deadline is looming for entry into this year’s Tales of the Cocktail USBG competition. Kicking off the fun on Friday, July 23rd this annual competition will feature USBG members mixing up their variations of a margarita with Milagro tequila as the key ingredient that shines through.
Entries are due in tomorrow, tax day (aka April 15th). Competition guidelines and an entry form are below.
Good luck!


USBG Milagro Tequila Margarita Competition

Location: The Board of Trade (316 Magazine Street)
New Orleans, LA
Date: Friday, July 23, 2010
Time: 7:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. with set-up beginning at 12:00 p.m. for competitors

Drink Submission
Each recipe must feature Milagro Tequila
Each chapter will receive sample bottles of Milagro Tequila Silver to each chapter president’s house for use during experimentation and recipe creation
Other spirits may be used as modifiers – As long as Milagro Tequila shines through
Continue Reading…



March 6, 2010

 42BELOW Presents the Cocktail World Cup National Finals

Sunday night 3/7 is going to be one of those evenings that, where no matter what city you live in, you might as well stay home and drink wine because your favorite bartender is going to be in NYC, competing at the 42Below Vodka Cocktail World Cup National Finals.

We’re not naming names (okay, we will eventually), but we are willing to say that if you’re invited to the Ace Hotel ( on Sunday night you might have a Lynn House, Thomas Waugh, Todd Thrasher, Philip Green, Paul Sevigny, Jason Brown, Matthew Coughlin, Sean Hoard (and more) sighting.

Who knows which ones the august panel of judges (Dale, Charles Ohlbaum , and Sam Talbot) will choose?  Time will tell. 

But here’s who’s in the running:

Matthew Biancaniello of Library Bar at The Roosevelt Hotel ( with the “Indian Summer” Cocktail

Jason Bran from The Roger Room with the “Down Under Dessert” Cocktail

Jason Brown of Sensing ( with the “Mr.Robinson”
Continue Reading…