In November, BACARDÍ hosted their East Coast Legacy Cocktail Competition. The showcase challenges bartenders to make "the next big drink" to stand up to the iconic BACARDÍ Daiquiri and BACARDÍ Mojito cocktails. The only ingredient stipulation is to utilize BACARDÍ Superior or BACARDÍ Gold rums in their concoctions. Contestants as close as Manhattan and as far as Florida, came out to show their mixology chops and I was lucky enough to witness it all. 

BACARDÍ outfitted Houston Hall to look like an old school tropical postcard, complete with flowers and flirty server outfits to boot. Each bartender had nine minutes to set up, showcase their drink and clean up their station. They were judged on balance, flavor, quality of ingredients and aesthetic appeal.

BACARDÍ Brand Master, David Cid, hosted the evening and the USA winner from last year, Naomi Levy, helped judge, along with three other industry experts. (Her winning cocktail, the Guayaba Arabica was also featured at the bar that night, which I had quite a few of!)

Ten qualified, but only three move on to compete against other finalists in the national competition taking place in Miami, Florida in 2015. Enzo Cangemi, Julio Carbrera and Ran Duan took these coveted spots. The winner from Miami will move on to compete as the US representative in the global competition, taking place in Sydney, Australia in May 2015.

To make the winning cocktails yourself, please see below for the recipes. We can't wait to see who wins the entire competition!

Enzo Cangini of New York, NY

·         1 ¼ parts BACARDÍ Gold   
·         ¼ parts Martini Gran Lusso
·         ¾ part hibiscus tea  
·         5 chopped radicchio leaves
·         ½ part lemon juice
·         ½ part radish simple syrup 

·         Pour lemon juice and radish simple syrup** into a shaker
·         Add 5 chopped radicchio leaves and muddle it
·         Add Hibiscus tea, Martini Gran Lusso and finally Bacardi gold
·         Shake vigorously for a few sec and double strain it into a coupe
·         Garnish with radish and radicchio  
·         **muddle 1 radish into a cup of water, boiling it for 15 min and add white sugar, 1/1 ratio

Julio Cabrera of Miami, FL

·         1 ½ parts BACARDÍ Gold  
·         ¾ part Tempus Fugit Creme de Cacao a la vanille                               
·         ¾ part Fresh squeeze Lime Juice                        
·         ¼ part Noilly Prat Ambre Vermouth                         
·         2 dashes Bittermens Coffee Bitters                  
·         A sprinkle of grated coffee on top

·         Shake all the ingredients with ice (except the grated coffee) and strain into a Cocktail glass
·         Sprinkle grated coffee on top

Ran Duan of Woburn, MA

·         1 ½ parts BACARDÍ Gold                      
·         ½ part Punt E Mes       
·         ½ part Cardamaro             
·         ½ part Amontillado       
·         ½ part Sherry Lustau       
·         ¼ part Creme De Banana Giffard 

·         Combine All Ingredients and stir 
·         Dilute 20%  pour in Chilled Coupe 
·         Garnish with Orange Swath

Pictures courtesy of BACARDI Rum and Stephanie Carino. Recipes courtesy of BACARDI Rum. 

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