Posts Tagged ‘contests’

August 8th, 2008

And the winning mixologist-poet is…

Joy Richard - Hendricks Beantown Bartender Battle 2008

Photos by C. Fernsebner

Joy Richard, bartender-manager at Tremont 647 and Sister Sorel in the South End, also known as Bourbon Belle of LUPEC Boston, won the Hendricks Gin Beantown Bartender Battle at Green Street on Tuesday night with her recipe, Nobody’s Darling, and the limerick she wrote to describe it. Congrats to Joy; she gets to fly anywhere in the country on Hendricks’ dime. Her drink, which will soon be on Tremont 647’s cocktail menu, was a most unique mixture starring the flavor of celery (one of the dozen botanicals used in Hendricks).

Parked at the bar for most of the evening, I was like the misbehaved kid in the back of the classroom ignoring the lesson, so I don’t have much color commentary for you (check out C. Fernsebner’s captioned photo gallery on Bostonist for an idea of how the battle went), but I did manage to track down all five finalists’ recipes — which only the judges got to sample that evening — along with Joy’s winning limerick.

Nobody’s Darling
by Joy Richard

2 oz Hendrick’s Gin
1/2 oz yellow Chartreuse
1 oz angelica root-infused honey
3/4 oz fresh celery juice
1/2 oz fresh lemon juice

Place all ingredients in iced cocktail shaker, shake well and strain into a chilled cocktail glass.

An elixir of cucumber and rose
With a scent that amuses the nose
Angelica-honey we’ll pair
Then some celery sounds fair
Yellow Chartreuse, lemon juice and there goes!

Chris O’Neil - Hendricks Beantown Bartender Battle 2008

The Seersucker
by Chris O’Neil of Upstairs on the Square

2 oz Hendricks Gin
3 oz chamomile syrup (chamomile, orange peel, honey, sugar)
Dash of lemon juice
Mint sprig to garnish

Shake first three ingredients in an iced cocktail shaker, pour into a highball glass, top with mint sprig.

Hendrick’s Tea
by Claudia Mastrobuono of Highland Kitchen

1 1/2 oz Hendricks Gin
1/2 oz orange peel-infused simple syrup
1/2 oz fresh lemon juice
3-4 oz chamomile iced tea (enough to top off the highball)

Shake all ingredients in an iced shaker, pour into a highball glass and garnish with a candied orange peel (the candied peel is a by-product of the simple syrup — just roll the peels in sugar and let them dry out).

Boston Tea Party
by Jeff Grdinich of White Mountain Cider Co.

2 oz Hendricks Gin
1 1/2 oz chamomile citrus tea*
1/2 oz Demerara simple syrup**
1/4 oz lemon juice***
1/2 to 1 barspoon Fernet Branca***

* Infuse 1 bag per 8 oz water for 5 minutes.
** Dilute 400g Demerara sugar in 1000 ml water.
*** Amount of lemon juice and Fernet varies based on tea infusion. Start small.

Place all ingredients in an iced cocktail shaker, shake well and strain into a chilled cocktail glass. Note: In the spirit of the competition, which required highlighting the botanicals used in Hendricks, Jeff put one hell of a garnish on his cocktail: a toasted brioche and cucumber sandwich brushed with butter that had been infused with most of the Hendricks botanicals. If you simply must have the recipe for that, email me.

Captain Kidd Cup
by Justin Falcone, freelance bartender

1 1/2 oz Hendricks Gin
1/2 oz pimento dram (St. Elizabeth’s Allspice Liqueur)
1/2 oz Pimm’s
1/2 oz lemon juice

Shake all ingredients in an iced cocktail shaker and pour into a highball glass. Top with ginger beer and garnish with lemon wedge and cucumber spear.

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Posted in Bartenders, Events, Gin | 1 Comment »

July 23rd, 2008

New deadline for Hendrick’s contest

This just in from Green Street bar manager Misty Kalkofen regarding the Hendrick’s Beantown Bartender Battle at Green Street on August 5: “We’ve extended the deadline for recipe submissions to Sunday. As many of us were busy destroying our livers in NOLA, Charlotte [Voisey, Hendrick’s brand ambassador] and I felt many folks could use a couple of extra days. Email your submissions to Charlotte and start working on a limerick!”

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Posted in Events, Gin | No Comments »

July 22nd, 2008

The best use of swag ever

Swag-Off at Tales 2008

Late Friday morning, walking into the Hotel Monteleone in New Orleans with my coffee, I bump into Jeffrey Morgenthaler of Eugene, Oregon. He’s one of the many blogger-bartenders featured at Tales of the Cocktail this year. He tells me that at 9:00 p.m., he, Daniel Shoemaker from the Teardrop Lounge in Portland, Oregon, and Erik Adkins from the Slanted Door in San Francisco are planning a mix-off at the pool on the roof of the Monteleone. The kicker is that their ingredients can come only from Jeff’s swag bag — the pile of nips, mixers and other cocktail accoutrements that sponsors give presenters at Tales. I say I’ll be there, thinking, ‘That’s the best idea I’ve heard all week.’ I tell my fellow Bostonian and Tales blogger Misty Kalkofen about it, and she wants in.

We arrive at the pool at 9:00, and the contestants are milling around a table laden with a bunch of small liquor bottles, three shakers and three hotel-room tumblers. They see us and say, “Great, our other two judges are here.” It turns out we’re not just there as casual bystanders. We are going to be picking the winner of Swag-Off ’08. OMG! The third judge is Keith Waldbauer, bartender at Union in Seattle and blogger of Moving at the Speed of Life. Not only that, Natalie Bovis-Nelson, aka the Liquid Muse, has brought her film crew along to capture the contest for the Tales webisodes she’s producing this year. (See Webisode #4 — the event falls somewhere in the middle of the six-minute piece. The footage of the actual judging didn’t make the cut, unfortunately.)

The only contest rule is that the French, grape-based G’Vine Gin must be used as a base, since the swag bag features it in greater quantity than any of the other spirits. (Jeff’s detailed account of the contest, including approximate recipes, is on the Tales Blog.) We’re talking serious creativity with a dash of sarcasm. Erik scents his glass with the smoke of a Navan Vanilla Liqueur aromatherapy candle. Jeff muddles Sour Green Apple Cocktail Candy with bitters. And Daniel spices his drink with chili powder. (The corresponding drinks are, in order, the Day Spa, the Green Mile and the Seat of the Pants.)

We judges declare Daniel’s Seat of the Pants, with its inventive melange of Angostura bitters, agave nectar, gin, grappa, Campari and, yes, chili powder, the winner. Jeff’s is a close second — it’s a bit too fruity for us (I liken it to Tropical Lifesavers), but it is actually a balanced cocktail. And Erik’s is the oddball, with the most gentle flavor of all despite a whopping two ounces of gin.

Later that night and the next day, everyone involved in the swag-off tells everyone they know about it, and word of this brilliant idea spreads quickly. Walking into the Napoleon House for lunch on Saturday, I bump into one of the drinks world’s biggest celebs, David Wondrich. He says, “Hey, I heard about the mix-off last night. That sounds great.” Damn, I think Swag-Off ’09 is going to need a bigger pool.

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Posted in New Orleans | 4 Comments »