On August 19, sixteen local bartenders competed in Philbrook Museum of Art’s annual MIX cocktail competition for bartender bragging rights, a $500 prize, and a larger than life-sized cocktail shaker trophy—which will sit in their place of employment until the whole shebang happens next year.
Chris Armstrong of Arnie’s Bar (318 E. 2nd St.) won the People’s Choice award, while Scott Phillips of Vintage 1740 (1740 S. Boston Ave.) took home the Critics’ Choice award.
Here, we present the inspiration behind the winning drinks, as well as the recipes, so you can dabble/tipple at home.
Arnie’s Bar and Grill
People’s Choice award winner for “Financial-ade”
Assigned ingredient: Redemption Rye whiskey
Armstrong wanted to create a summer send-off using local ingredients. What better than fresh Porter peaches?
“The original idea for the picture was to do a lemonade stand with the kids,” Armstrong said. “But they were supposed to be upset because dad and his friends took over and made it an adult lemonade stand. But then the kids saw how much money they were making with adult beverages. And, ‘financial aid,’ like for a college fund.”
- 2 parts fresh Porter peach puree
- 3 parts fresh squeezed lemon juice
- 3 parts Redemption Rye whiskey
- 2 parts ginger-infused simple syrup
- 1 mint leaf
Combine all liquid ingredients. Rim a glass with sugar and fill with ice. Add mixed drink. Spank a mint leaf to awaken it and place on top. Enjoy!
Editor’s note: This cocktail works well made in large batches, like a punch. Additionally, once base juices are made, single drinks can be made easily.
Critics’ Choice award winner for “Constant Edge”
Assigned ingredient: Broker’s Gin
“I was messing with a few gin cocktails before I got selected to represent Vintage for the competition,” Phillips said. “I had a couple things pulling me this way and that way and took a short nap—then had a eureka moment of what I wanted to go in it. I developed the concept and then the name. I used Broker’s gin for ‘constant’ and for English culture, and from England and Japanese cultures is the tea, which gives you ‘edge.’”
- 1 oz. Broker’s Gin
- .75 oz. dry sake
- .75 oz. blueberry tea syrup
- .5 oz. lemon juice
- 3-4 basil leaves
- Lemon twist
Combine all ingredients into shaker. Add ice and shake vigorously. Double strain into a chilled coupe glass. Garnish with lemon twist. Kampai!