By the time Sunday began, I was ready for a little leisurely imbibing. With the weekend coinciding with the Great American Distillers Festival, I dropped in to Portland’s Leftbank Annex to check out the selection of distillers and distributors bringing the best spirits to Stumptown. My plans, however, were a bit thwarted when Oregon Bartenders Guild president David Shenaut asked me to step in to judge the final round of the GADF cocktail competition. Joining fellow judges Ali Tahsini, who took home first prize in last year’s competition, and Paul Clarke, I happily took part in the tasting as finalists Chris Hannah and Justin Pike, along with Portland’s own Art Tierce and Mary Bartett, selected a mystery ingredient to pair with a Hudson Bay whiskey for their final cocktail. Each mixing with a super impressive “mystery” fruit shrub from Sage & Sea Farms, it was Art Tierce who ultimately stole the show – and the $1000 prize.
From the GADF, I made my way across town to the oft-lauded Beast for the Classic Malt Scotch cocktail dinner with chef Naomi Pomeroy, where dishes like seared scallop, sirloin lamb roast, and Pomeroy’s signature charcuterie were paired with drinks from bartenders Jason Littrell, Hal Wolin, Tommy Klus, and Mr. Shenaut.
Dare I say the evening, and the grand weekend of craft cocktailians, faded from there. A few last parties, including the much fun Maker’s Mark shindig at video game mecca Ground Kontrol, brought revelers slowly to the end of the 2011 PDXCW adventures.
Much love and many thanks to the ever-so-fabulous Lindsey Johnson and her crew at Lush Life Productions, as well as all of the hard workers, and stellar mixers, of the Oregon Bartenders Guild.
Remember to tip your bartenders!
Missed a few posts? Check out all the 2011 Portland Cocktail Week coverage here!
*Photo credit: Jennifer Heigl / Daily Blender