tmfiii (tmfiii) wrote in scofflaws_den,
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A Scofflaw Crashes a Cocktail Compeition (Part 2)

Last Tuesday at the Hotel Helix, the top ten semi-finalists for their Spring/Summer cocktail competition met for a no-holds-barred cage match to the finish . . . well maybe not, but here the the exciting conclusion of the cocktail competition.  (You can read the first portion Here.)

It turns out that there were over 140 entries in the competition.  Already I felt pretty good about being in the top ten.  They ran the competiton like "American Idol."  As one competitor was in front of "Not-Randy," "Not-Paula" and "Not-Simon" (and let's not forget "Not-Ryan") the next contestant worked with the bartenders to make your drink to go before the judges.  

Well, long story short, I came in fourth!  I talked with the judges afterward (the judges were actually the Assistant GM, the Food & Beverage Manager and the Bar Manager) and learned that I lost by 3/10ths of a point.  Boo!!!  AJ, the Food & Bev Mgr., said that he really liked the execution of my drink and enjoyed the flavors.  Angie, the Bar Manager, said that she knew my drink was in the top 10 simply from the recipe - it had the flavors, and used gin - something missing from the menu, that she loved.   Two quick notes: 1) Most of the drinks in the top ten were incredibly sweet and vodka based.  B) The bartenders rushed through the muddling on my drink and short changed the simple syrup a touch.  The resulting drink came out much dryer with less "fresh strawberry" flavor. 

And while I didn't make the top 3, I think my "consolation prize" is much better.  Angie said that she loved my drink so much that it would probably still make its way on the Spring/Summer menu.  Then she asked, if I didn't mind, if she could contact me later in the summer and consult on the Fall Cocktail menu!!!  Wooo-Hooo!  

(Now, realistically, I wonder whether or not I'll actually get an email.  But at that moment, it was still nice being recognized as someone who has some knowledge of what he's doing - enough to get asked for help.  Maybe a moral victory, but I'll take it!)

Along with that cool little turn of events, everyone at Hotel Helix were super nice and friendly and they seem to really want to make their bar program a destination for DC drinkers, not just hotel guests.  It was a fun evening and I'm certainly glad I participated and got to meet everyone.

Cheers!

Tags: competitions
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