New Liquor Launches in September 2012
How Grey Goose is Made

The Grey Goose 10 Cocktail Competition

Last week near Cognac, France I helped judge the first international Grey Goose 10 cocktail competition. My co-judges were Dimi Lezinska, Global Brand Ambassador for Grey Goose, and Francois Thibault, the Maitre de Chai (basically, the dude in charge of production) of the brand. 

This year the ten bartenders from around the globe were hand-picked by their local brand teams. Many of them have worked with Bacardi in some capacity in the past. Next year, I believe the plans is to hold regional cocktail competitions to choose the 10. 

The competition took place poolside at the Logis du Fresne, an ancient walled property that the brand purchased recently. It was kinda nice. The drinks made in this competition were generally awesome, and got better with each subsequent round. 

Grey Goose 10 location_tn

In the first round, bartenders were supposed to make drinks inspired by their own countries. Diego Diaz from Puerto Rico used soursop (guanabana) juice in his drink; Felipe Silva of Mexico used guava jam in his; Marcelo Serrano from Brazil used both cupuacu syrup and jambu (sp) foam; Emilio Tiburcio from the US used caramelized apples suspended above a dry-ice bubbling drink; Joseph Biolatto from France used creme de cassis in a drink inspired by lovemaking (how very French).

Richard Woods Grey Goose 10 2012 Competition drink_tn
Emilio Tiburcio Grey Goose 10_tn
Joseph Biolatto Grey Goose 10_tn

Here's the cocktail by Joseph Biolatto:

 

L'Amour a la Fran├žaise
1 1/2 parts Grey Goose vodka
1 part Liqueur de Gingembre Maison
1/2 part fresh lemon juice
1/2 part sugar syrup
splash creme de cassis
Shaken and garnish with a sprig of mint

 

Five bartenders went on to the second round, in which they were supposed to make drinks inspired by a classic French cocktail, with French ingredients.Jay Jones from Canada made a cocktail with Grey Goose L'Orange, Noilly Prat vermouth, Amer Picon, and Benedictine. 

Jay Jones  Grey Goose 10 2012 Competition11_tn

Yao Lu from China (and formerly of Anvil in Houston) made a drink with Grey Goose original, Lillet blanc, Yellow Chartreuse, absinthe, and a lemon twist. 

Yao Lu  Grey Goose 10 2012 Competition10_tn

Moshe Budnik of Israel made a cocktail inspired by the French 75 with Grey Goose original, lime, rosewater, and a cucumber foam. 

Moshe Budnik Grey Goose 10_tn

Nitin Tewari of India made his drink with Grey Goose L'Orange, lavender syrup, cranberry juice, and Angostura bitters. 

Nitins Taj Mahal drink Grey Goose 10 2012 Competition_tn

Richard Woods of the UK (London) made a drink with Grey Goose La Poire, Chambord, Benedictine, Chartreuse, and pineapple that was a sophisticated twist on the French Martini. 

Grey Goose 10 2012 Competition7_tn

Here's the cocktail from Yao Lu:

 

King of Fools
2 parts Grey Goose vodka
1 part Lillet Blanc
2/3 part Yellow Chartreuse
1 barspoon absinthe
Stir and garnish with a lemon twist

 

For Round Three, the three finalists had to make drinks inspired by the previous days of the trip. Jay Jones from the Shangri-La Hotel in Vancouver made a drink he called The Protagonist with Grey Goose original, pineau des charantes, Bordeaux wine, and dry curacao, with a mist of ginger and orange blossom. 

Finalists  Grey Goose 10 2012 Competition_tn
Jay Jones Grey Goose 10_tn

Yao Lu of The Alchemist in Shanghai made one called Against the Current with grey Goose original, red chili peppers, Campari, a cherry and prune liqueur, and Angostura bitters. 

Drink by Richard Woods  Grey Goose 10 2012 Competition_tn

Richard Woods of The Upstairs Bar at Sushi Samba in London made a "Borrower's Cocktail" with Grey Goose Cherry Noir, Suze, Noilly Prat Ambre, and cardamom-coriander bitters. One day earlier all the bartenders were given a mini barrel to make barrel-aged cocktails when they returned home, but Woods aged this cocktail in the hopes that he'd make it this far in the competition. 

Richard Woods  Grey Goose 10 2012 Competition13_tn

He did, and the drink was delicious, so Richard Woods was the winner of the first annual Grey Goose 10 cocktail competition. Well done!

 

  Francois and Richard Grey Goose 10_tn

To see more pictures from the event and trip to France, check out my Flickr page or the Alcademics Facebook group

Camper's Book: Tonic Water AKA G&T WTF is now available for sale.

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