Drink Magazine

An Evening At The American Spirits Bartender Competition

By Boozedancing @boozedancing
Event Emcee Kacie McDonnell with Stephen Diaz of 10 Arts and Ryan Lax of The Ritz Carlton Philadelphia

Event Emcee Kacie McDonnell with Stephen Diaz of 10 Arts and Ryan Lax of The Ritz Carlton Philadelphia

On Wednesday, February 27th (i.e. two nights ago), Limpd and I attended the American Spirits Bartender Competition at the Stratus Rooftop Lounge which is located on the top floor of the Hotel Monaco in Old City Philadelphia. This event was sponsored by the National Constitution Center as part of their current exhibition, American Spirits: The Rise and Fall of Prohibition, and featured 1920′s inspired cocktails made by four different bartenders from four different Center City Philadelphia hotels.

Much like in an Iron Chef competition, each bartender was required to incorporate one specific ingredient into each of their cocktail creations. For this particular competition, the required ingredient was Bluecoat Gin which just happens to be distilled in Philadelphia and which was also a sponsor of the event.

Below are the names of the host, judges, and bartenders that participated in this event:

  • Event Emcee – Kacie McDonnell,Fox 29′s Good Day Philadelphia Traffic Reporter.
  • Judges – Laura Burkhardt, Where Magazine; Marisa Magnatta, WMMR’s Preston and Steve Morning Show; Maria Papadakis, host of Out and About on Philly.com; and Brian Sims, PA State Representative.
  • Bartenders – Stephen Diaz of 10 Arts, The Ritz Carlton Hotel; Nate Churchill of XIX, Hyatt At The Bellevue; Chauncey Scates of Square 1682, Palomar Hotel; and Bess Gulliver of Stratus Rooftop Lounge, Hotel Monaco.

During our two hour stay at the Stratus Rooftop Lounge, we tried each of the cocktails (all four were quite quaffable!), enjoyed some light snacks, talked with all of the bartenders about their creations, met several people that work in some aspect of the growing Philadelphia nightlife and entertainment industry (i.e. a representative from Philadelphia Distilling, the founder of Drink Philly, the marketing and PR people from the National Constitution Center), and we even had a brief word with a local celebrity (Fox 29′s Howard Eskin). This proved to be yet another wonderful event which we were lucky enough to attend.

In the spirit of “a picture is worth a thousand words“, below are some photos from the event for your viewing pleasure…

An Evening At The American Spirits Bartender Competition
Philly Skyline View at Stratus Lounge
An Evening At The American Spirits Bartender Competition
The Bar at the Stratus Rooftop Lounge
An Evening At The American Spirits Bartender Competition
Jazz Baby Cocktail
An Evening At The American Spirits Bartender Competition
Noelle Ferrazzano and Bess Gulliver of the Stratus Rooftop Lounge. Bess is putting the finishing touches on her Jazz Baby Cocktail.
An Evening At The American Spirits Bartender Competition
The Red Fizz Charleston
An Evening At The American Spirits Bartender Competition
Chauncey Scates making The Powder Room Punch Cocktail
An Evening At The American Spirits Bartender Competition
Orange Blossom Cocktail
An Evening At The American Spirits Bartender Competition
Noelle Ferrazzano and Bess Gulliver of the Stratus Rooftop Lounge chatting with Nate Churchill of XIX.
An Evening At The American Spirits Bartender Competition
Flaming the Orange Peel for the Jazz Baby
An Evening At The American Spirits Bartender Competition
Bess Gulliver Hard at Work
An Evening At The American Spirits Bartender Competition
Jazz Baby Cocktail by Bess Gulliver
An Evening At The American Spirits Bartender Competition
Drink Philly founder Adam Schmidt
An Evening At The American Spirits Bartender Competition
Two Fisted Drinking at the Stratus Rooftop Lounge
An Evening At The American Spirits Bartender Competition
Howard Eskine Chatting With His Fox 29 Colleague

And for your drinking pleasure, below are recipes for the four cocktails that were served during the event:

_____________________________

The “Guest Favorite” Award Winning Cocktail: The Red Fizz Charleston by Stephen Diaz of 10 Arts, The Ritz Carlton Hotel

  • 2 oz. Bluecoat Gin
  • 1 oz. St Germain.
  • 1.5 oz. Fresh Raspberry Syrup
  • .5 oz. Fresh Lemon Juice

Shake with ice and strain into a cocktail glass. Top with a splash of Dry Brut Champagne. Garnish with a fresh lemon twist and skewered fresh raspberries.

_____________________________

The “Judge Favorite” Award Winning Cocktail: Orange Blossom by Nate Churchill of XIX, Hyatt At The Bellevue

  • Bluecoat Gin
  • Fresh Lemon Juice
  • Fresh Orange Juice
  • Honey
  • Dashes of Bitters

Serve in an 8 ounce mason jar or shot glasses. Garnish with orange zest.

_____________________________

Limpd’s Favorite Cocktail: The Powder Room Punch by Chauncey Scates of Square 1682, Palomar Hotel

  • 1.5 oz. Bluecoat Gin
  • .5 oz. Cointreau
  • 1 oz. Jasmine Tea
  • .75 oz. Fresh Lemon Juice
  • .5 oz. Grenadine (Pomegranate Juice Reduction)
  • 1 dash of Peychaud’s Bitters
  • 1 dash of Angostura Bitters

Serve in a punch or rocks glass.

_____________________________

G-LO’s Favorite Cocktail: Jazz Baby by Bess Gulliver of Stratus Rooftop Lounge, Hotel Monaco

  • 1.5 oz. Bluecoat Gin
  • 1 oz. Carpano Antica Formula Vermouth
  • .25 oz. Pierre Ferrand Dry Orange Curacao
  • 1 barspoon Averna Amaro

Stir over ice and serve in a small cocktail glass. Garnish with a flamed orange peel.

_____________________________

Many thanks to the good people at the National Constitution Center for inviting us to this outstanding event!


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