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Marie Brizard USA Cocktail Challenge Finals

Marie Brizard makes some of my favorite liqueurs, and their cocktail competition at the recent Tales of the Cocktail featured some really interesting drinks. Here is the winner:

And the winner of the Marie Brizard USA Cocktail Challenge Finals is… 

Miami’s Robert Montero of Yardbird Southern Table & Bar, with his winning cocktail, “Sunny Crusta!” Robert received a cash prize of $1,000 and a complimentary trip to represent the U.S. this November in the annual Marie Brizard International Bartender Seminar and Competition in Bordeaux, France where he will be competing against top mixologists and bartenders from across the world who will all be preparing their original Marie Brizard cocktail to be sampled and judged by an expert panel.

The Runner-Up was James Menite of NYC’s Crown with, The “Made” Cocktail. James received a cash prize of $500.

The Marie Brizard USA Cocktail Challenge Finals consisted of 6 contestants judged on technique, appearance, aroma and taste battling for the coveted spot to represent the U.S. in the 30th annual Marie Brizard International Bartender Seminar and Competition this November in Bordeaux, France.


Sunny Crusta
Created by Robert Montero (Yardbird Southern Table & Bar)

1/2 oz. Marie Brizard Orange Curaçao
3/4 oz. Marie Brizard Blackberry
1 1/2 oz. Tequila Ocho Blanco
3/4 oz. Grapefruit Juice
1/2 oz. Lime juice
1/4 oz. Agave Syrup

Shake ingredients together and strain into a sugar-rimmed wine glass. Garnish with a grapefruit peel and 3 Filthy Black Cherries.

Congratulations to Robert!

Drink Recipes Liqueurs Vodka

Recipe: The Death Rattle – a cocktail memorializing the Blackberry smartphone

My brother sent me a link last night to a story on about the troubles that RIM is having in North America with their Blackberry service. His comment wondered if this would be the end of the Blackberry, something that has been looming on the horizon for a while now.

Naturally, this inspired me to think about cocktails and how I could commemorate the end of this once-great brand in liquid form. This is what I came up with:


Death Rattle

Shake with ice:

1 1/2 oz. Death's Door Vodka
1/2 oz. Blackberry Brandy
1/2 oz. St. Germain Elderflower Liqueur

Strain into a chilled cocktail glass.


I tried to think of ingredients that would go together in a pleasing fashion, yet also be symbolic of the Blackberry and its impending doom. The result is both tasty and tongue-in-cheek.

Although I don't often make vodka cocktails, the base spirit in this one was a no-brainer, as was the Blackberry Brandy (I used Bols), which adds some sweetness. The Elderflower Liqueur doesn't have any symbolism with regards to the theme of the drink, but it gives it a pleasing floral quality that pairs very nicely with the blackberry flavor.