Cocktail Submitteratrix contest results!
Boy howdy that was a lot of submissions! So many, it took quite awhile to make those drinks, take pictures, judge them, so my apologies for the delay. I recognize that everyone worked hard on their drinks, and really came up with some great ideas. There were two beer cocktails, a few featuring the use of applejack, many tradition multi-rum tiki drinks, and even a few with some real off the wall spirits (Sticky Rice liqueur anyone?).
I’ve prepared the top 20 as recipe posts through the month of March! So be sure to keep checking in for some great new recipes. But enough blather, let’s get on to the top 3 of the bunch.
At number three, Nathan Gerdes’ Caballada! This inventive blend of Tequila Blanco with Don’s Spices #2, Hibiscus Grenadine and lime really sings, and the tequila and Spices #2 work insanely well with a blend of smoke and spice. The color, too, is just wondrous to look at. There’s a lot to be taken from this lovely pink drink. The drink also uses only four ingredients to make its magic. One of the things I constantly prattle on about (although do not always practice) is keeping drinks with readily available ingredients and easy to make. I can’t imagine any promo material containing a drink with 15 ingredients, 5 of which are homemade and/or bitters. It’s tough to source, won’t taste the same, and will be the bane of any bartender with it on the menu. Anyhow, thanks Nathan for this amazing drink! And just as a note, Nathan is a friend and former co-worker, and as such has forfeited his prize. I will instead be sending an assortment of syrups to Ben Justus for his frighteningly tasty Kraken’s Beak.
At number two, the Aloha A-Loh-A from Thayer Abigael. This rum strong drink mixes three, count ‘em three of my syrups with some dark Jamaican rum and lots of lemon. The blend of syrups (ginger, passion fruit, and falernum) bring out the spice and funk of the rum, while the passion fruit and lemon work to balance out what could be an otherwise sweet drink, by bringing in the tart. It’s rich, spicy, and complex as any great tropical drink should be. Cheers to Thayer, who will be receiving a swizzle stick, tiki mug from Thatch here in Portland, and of course, an assortment of syrups.
And finally… number one, the numero uno, el hoche mache with the bocce, Halloween Moon by Joby “Tiki Geeki” Bednar! Stepping outside of the traditional rum, rum and more rum combos, Joby hit upon one of my other favorite boozes by using Applejack. What can I say, it’s a weakness on my part, but a tasty, tasty weakness. He followed it up by using Tangerine juice, a cocktail ingredient I’ve never personally used, but the flavor was out of this damned world. Maybe he’s just lucky and I happened to hit upon the most perfect tangerine ever grown, but this definitely worked. Add in my Cinnamon and Vanilla syrup, and you’ve got a 1-2 punch of sweet and spice, with a few bucketloads of complexity thrown in to boot. As my wife said, it’s like the best apple pie she’s ever had. The tangerine shell also adds a nice colorful touch to the drink. It’s got lots of flavor, keeps it simple, and has a very unique flavor profile. Joby will be receiving a classic Hamilton Beach Drinkmaster (aka – turbo-powered swizzle stick) as reward for his great endeavor, as well as a few assorted syrups, and whatever else I can throw into the mail.
Now I know you’re asking… well, where are the recipes to make this fine and fantastical concoctions? Keep coming back, as they’ll be posted this week along with the rest of the entries (in no particular order) through the month of March!