With this 20-degree weather, what better way to warm up and get ready into the holiday spirit than with some cocktails? This is what over 400 New Yorkers did at the at the Fourth Annual Holiday Spirits Bazaar. We enjoyed an array of holiday concoctions, punches, nogs, and even spiked coffee made by the best bartenders in the city, each competing for the top title in a friendly Punch-Off.
20 spirits purveyors competed for the title for the top punch maker, and the decision was made by judges Kara Newman, spirits writer and author of Cocktails for a Crowd; Damon Boelte, bar director at Prime Meats and host of “The Speakeasy” on Heritage Radio Network; and Brian Miller, veteran bartender and owner of Double Windsor Consulting.
The glorious cocktail fest was hosted by The Dizzy Fizz held at the Invisible Dog in Brooklyn with a rustic wooden cabin feel with festive decorations. In addition to all of the amazing cocktails, guests were treated to carved beef brisket, pulled pork sliders, cole slaw and pickles by Mable’s Smokehouse.
For dessert, an assortment of delicious pies by Butter & Scotch and Cutie Pies NYC – think pumpkin, creme brulee, apple crumble, banana cream – were on sale at $3 per slice with 100% of proceeds to benefit Children’s Aid Society, a non-profit supporting NYC’s children in need.
For the bartending competition, the First Place Punch was awarded to the “All American Punch” by Elayne Duff representing George Dickel Tennessee Whiskey, featuring Dickel 12, Bulleit Rye infused with Lapsang Souchong tea, Carpano Antica Vermouth, Pom fall syrup, Aperol, lemon juice, Pom juice, apple cider and Angostura bitters.
The People’s Choice for top punch was a mezcal punch by Montelobos Mezcal, the “Whoa Mama” featuring Montelobos Joven Mezcal, lime juice, pomegranate molasses and ginger beer.
My personal favorite was the drink by White Pike Whiskey who made a coffee cocktail cold-brewed with whiskey instead of water. You get quite a bit of a kick with your morning pick-me-up. Ingenius!
Other amazing liquor sponsors included Rhum Clement, G’Vine Gin, Bulleit Bourbon, Sorel, White Pike Whiskey, Monkey Shoulder, Art in the Age Spirits, Tuthilltown Spirits, Four Roses Bourbon, Iceberg Vodka, Blue Chair Bay Rum, Excellia Tequila, George Dickel Tennessee Whiskey, 300 Joules, Cockspur Rum, The Irishman Whiskey, Tap 357 Maple Rye Whiskey, Molinari Sambuca Extra, The Famous Grouse, Averna Amaro, and many more.
For punch and cocktail recipes from the event, please visit holidayspiritsbazaar.com. Cheers to another great holiday (and boozing) season!