Toro Toro, the restaurant located in the swanky InterContinental, is currently competing in the semifinals of the InterContinental Hotels & Resorts Top Shelf Cocktail Competition. The contest is between all of the North American InterContinental hotels in a bid to create Bacardi-inspired drinks. The winners will be added to a new InterContinental Signature Cocktail menu available at all North American properties starting in 2015.
Through November 11, patrons can come in to try a small sample of all three of the Miami property's competing cocktails. If you share photos and/or posts about the cocktails on social media, you will be rewarded with your choice of a free drink from the three contenders. The social media buzz created by Miamians will also help Toro Toro in accumulating points needed to win the contest.
The first and most creative drink is called the Calle Ocho. It consists of Bacardi Superior and Añejo, lemongrass-infused simple syrup, 1/2 oz. of Lavazza espresso, three large mint leaves, and topped off with IBC Cream Soda. It tastes like a coffee milkshake concoction. According to mixologist Matt Phillips, "Miami is well known for its brazen blend of culture and cuisine, however Cuban culture remains dominant. In order to reflect Miami's bold style, we chose to act accordingly. And so the Calle Ocho was born. An ambitious libation that combines a mojito and cafecito, two of Miami's most definitive drinks." The only way this drink could be more Miami is by putting some Tony Montana product on the rim in lieu of salt.
The second contender is a twisted experiment that is named A Clockwork Peach. Phillips and mixologist Sean O'Connor wanted to create something unique and mixed fruits, herbs and liquors that they never imagined would mesh. The final concoction has St. Germain, Dewars, fresh squeezed lemon juice, thyme infused agave syrup, muddled Georgia peaches, and two cubes of fresh ginger. The drink was well balanced and not overtly sweet as one might expect. The name is an ode to A Clockwork Orange, which included plenty of mad scientist experimentation.
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The third drink is just a traditional daiquiri that all properties had to make. But that should not stop you from trying a free sample of it.
The contest will run through November 11, leading up to the final event that will transpire in Miami on November 13. When you go in to sample and claim your free drink you must use the hashtag #ICTopShelf, while also checking into Toro Toro Miami. Patrons are encouraged to post pictures and opinions on the cocktails via Twitter and Facebook during the event. The more mentions you make, the more points Toro Toro will get, which will help them take home the grand prize.
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