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July 30, 2013

American Winners Selected for the 5th Annual Copa Jerez. Now on to Spain.

Copa Jerez 2013 5th annual logo

The 5th Copa Jerez USA Competition finals were held on July 1st at Haven’s Kitchen in New York City, and Chef de Cuisine Scott Jones and Wine Program Manager Melodie Reynolds from No. 9 Park in Boston won the opportunity to represent the United States at the International Copa Jerez Competition in Spain this October!

Their winning menu is as follows:

Starter Course: Artichokes en Barigoule with deviled quail eggs, white gazpacho, white sturgeon caviar, and manzanilla olive paired with Hidalgo La Gitana Manzanilla
Main Course: Rohan Duck Breast with La Belle Farms foie gras, asparagus and truffle marmalade, marcona almond, and fennel pollen brioche paired with Lustau Almacenista Pata de Gallina Oloroso
Dessert Course: Mango Mousse with cinnamon graham financier, rooibos, and honey crunch paired with César Florido Moscatel Especial (dish created by Executive Pastry Chef Jaime Davis)

Copa Jerez 2013 winning team

Copa Jerez is an international competition featuring top chefs and sommeliers from across Europe, Asia, and North America, in which each team is commissioned with choosing the ultimate matches of Vinos de Jerez with food. It was created to showcase the incredible diversity of Sherry wine and its remarkable ability to match with food.

Competition was fierce, as Scott Jones and Melodie Reynolds competed against two incredible teams — James Campbell Caruso and Miguel Villalpando, La Boca, Santa Fe, NM, and Continue Reading…

Rocks Stars


August 1, 2012

Rocks Stars Goes To Tales of the Cocktail
By David Ransom

5 questions for Joaquin Simo of Death & Co, New York City, Named U.S. Bartender of the Year at the 2012 Tales of the Cocktail Awards

Q. How many years have you been coming to Tales of the Cocktail?
A. Five…ish, I think…

Q. Do you wear an armband?
A. No

Q. Sponsorships aside, what’s your go to spirit right now?
A. Whatever’s in front of me… and Sherry, which technically isn’t really a spirit.

Q. As a veteran of this industry, what advice do you have for someone just getting into the business?
A. The most important thing in this business is who’s in front of you, not what’s in the glass. Always
remember, we serve people, not drinks. With that as your mantra, the world’s yours to conquer.

Q. What’s your favorite garnish?
A. None, I don’t use them much. Then again, I suppose cucumber ribbons, because they annoy the waitstaff…

Love it! Congratulations on your recent accolade…



October 6, 2010

Five US finalist teams compete today in the 2011 Copa Jerez food and Sherry pairing cook-off competition. Each team which includes the restaurant’s chef and sommelier/beverage director will highlight their culinary prowess and expertise in Sherry wines in the day-long competition held at Astor Center that culminates before a panel of judges. The winner moves on to the final competition to be held in Spain in January, 20111.

Competing teams are:

Casa Mono (New York City) – Chef Anthony Sasso and Wine Director Ashley Santoro

La Boca (Santa Fe) – Chef James Campbell Caruso and Wine Director Adam Johnson

Michy’s (Miami) – Chef Michelle Bernstein and Sommelier Allegra Angelo

The Bazaar (Los Angeles) – Chef Joshua Whigham and Sommelier/Beverage Director Lucas Paya

The Broadmoor (Colorado Springs) – Chef Bertrand Bouquin and Sommelier Timothy Baldwin

“It was a tough decision. The caliber of chefs and sommeliers this year is fantastic, and we look forward to a great Final in New York, ” said Sonia Smith, director of the Sherry Council of America. “It’s wonderful to see the trend for Sherry growing, as chefs and sommeliers become excited about pairing Sherry with their food.”

Now in its fourth year, the Copa Jerez competition is one of Spain’s leading culinary events. The winning national teams will compete for the international title this January in Jerez, Spain where renowned chefs and sommeliers from around the world judge the menus. International chef and sommelier teams from countries such as Japan, Great Britain, the Netherlands, Germany, and France compete with their most innovative recipes and Sherry wine pairings.

To view the competition via live video feed, stop by Astor Center today between 1:00 p.m. and 7:00 p.m.

For more information on Copa Jerez 2010, visit