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Gin judging

Last night I helped judge the Hendrick's gin cocktail competition at Rye. Hendrick's likes to make things interesting in their events and marketing, so for this contest bartenders not only had to create a cocktail showcasing one of the botanicals in Hendrick's, they also had to recite a limerick to go along with it. The limericks were weighted heavily in the judging but luckily our top contenders were strong in both the poetic and taste categories.

The winner of the contest was Sierra Zimei of the Seasons Bar at the Four Seasons with her Secret Garden cocktail consisting of grapefruit, cucumber, lime, and cilantro syrup with a healthy dose of gin mixed in. She won a round-trip air ticket anywhere in the States, which unfortunately she's not using to join us at Tales of the Cocktail but opting for a baseball game with her husband instead. I believe that marriage should not get in the way of cocktailing, but then again that may be a reason I'm still single. I'll ponder that over drinks later.

After the contest, I went out to dinner with Julio Bermejo of Tommy's, Charlotte Voissey of Hendrick's, Rob Renteria of Martini House, Greg Lindgren of Rye, and some other friends of Julio. Joey and Eddie's (the former Moose's) has a short cocktail menu, from which I chose the Bronx Negroni, which is a regular Negroni with a touch of Averna. Very good.

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