About 35 guests gathered at The Broken Shaker last night to watch as ten Miami bartenders competed in the 2012 Mix It Up Mixology Challenge. This competition weeds out nine other bartenders and sends the winner to compete nationally in New York.
After a rather long introductory spiel, the bartenders got down to the booze challenge: Seven minutes to create three cocktails made with two Don Qs (or two alcohols) and additional ingredients that can easily be found in grocery stores (in other words, they couldn't be homemade).
The three judges: Don Q in-house mixologist, Esteban Ordonez, Bar Lab and The Broken Shaker partner, Gabriel Orta, and Republic National Distributing Company staff mixologist, Michael Parish. Their scores were based on factors such as, thought process, technicalities, US Bartenders Guild and IBA standards and taste.
"Papa Doble," or Julio Cabrera took home the crown for a second year in a row last night. He not only won in Miami last year, but he represented Miami nationally (along with Ezra Pattek of The Broken Shaker) and won that title too.
"This motherfucker's gonna bring the trophy back home again," said Parish as the judges announced Cabrera's victory. "That wouldn't surprise us," replied a guest.
Cabrera's winning recipe last night was called "Sandia del Batey". His drink included (among two Don Qs, of course) freshly muddled ginger, lime juice, sugar, and fresh watermelon juice. It was garnished with skewered watermelon and candied ginger.
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After a three hour competition, about ten broken glasses, and orange juggling, the two runner ups were announced: Erza Pattek and Elad Zvi, both of The Broken Shaker.