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Regent Cocktail Club's Julio Cabrera Makes U.S. Bartender of the Year Finals

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Julio Cabrera did Miami proud at this week's United States Bartender's Guild (USBG) and Diageo World Class competition to crown the U.S. Bartender of the Year. He and Michael Parish represented Miami at the two-day competition that consisted of a series of challenges and mixing competitions that tested each bartender's mixing skills, as well as their knowledge of spirits.

Out of thousands of bartenders, Cabrera and Parish were two of twenty competitors chosen go to New York for a chance at the 2013 title.

Read also:

- Two Miami Mixologists Compete Today in U.S. Bartender of the Year Showdown

After two days of intense mixing -- just as a winner was to be announced -- something extraordinary happened.

Two challengers scored equally in the final tally. The competition was tied between mixologists Jeff Bell (PDT in New York City) and Miami's Julio Cabrera (Regent Cocktail Club). Since only one bartender can represent the United States in the worldwide competition, set for July 4-10 on board the Azamara Club Cruise in the Mediterranean, a live "Shake-Off" was held.

Each finalist was given seven minutes to prepare their "perfect serve" cocktails for five judges. After careful deliberation, Jeff Bell was declared the winner.

After being named champion, Bell acknowledged Cabrera. "I want to thank Julio, he is an exceptional mixologist that truly deserves all the recognition in the world."

We think so, too! Good job, Julio. To Miami, you are the "Bartender of the Year".

Follow Laine Doss on Twitter @LaineDoss and Facebook.

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