Elm City Cocktail Competition, OK? Register food columnist Stephen Fries invited me to judge this a couple months ago, and that's a good thing because I came to a major, major conclusion: I can consume some mixed drinks without making funny faces. I'm serious. It's possible.
I'm a beer guy. You pour me a good ale, and you'll have my heart forever. Sadly, none of the nine bars that competed in this first annual event gave me a Dale's Pale Ale in a martini glass or anything. I had to drink (some of) nine cocktails. I haven't had nine real cocktails in my life. Well, maybe I have, but it's really, really close.
Out of all the entrees, the one that scared me the most beforehand was coming from Leon's, a little concoction that included cucumber, my mortal nemesis. I did not like that drink. It turns out, Bespoke won the event. I have to say, that drink tasted like a Sour Patch Kid to me. It wasn't that great. Way too sweet. Way too sweet.
Personally, I was a big fan of the drinks poured by the very nice people over at BAR, Bar 19 and 116 Crown. I guess I like things with "bar" and numbers in the name. Who knew?
The big surprise, to me, was that I tended to like the manly drinks. I had a feeling I'd like the girl-friendly stuff because, you know, I don't do mixed drinks and fondly remember $1 mixed drink nights freshman year Providence College. I personally consumed many, many screwdrivers and Midori sours. Girly. I grew out of that crap quickly though. At this event, I liked the stuff with whiskey and bourbon best. That's amazing to me.
That’s what you all missed today. You might regret that, but you certainly shouldn’t regret the heartburn that I got. Too many acidic drinks left me with some burn. But it’s good burn because, you know, now I'm officially an adult. I can drink a cocktail without making a funny face. Woo hoo.