Hosted by Nashville's Steadfast Coffee in November, Commonwealth: A Coffee Cocktail Competition presented 13 pairs of one barista and one bartender, who each had five minutes to present a delicious cocktail using coffee as an ingredient to a panel of Music City judges. Proceeds for the event went to CORE, a nonprofit that benefits children of restaurant employees who are navigating life-altering conditions. After a battle that featured cocktail shakers, espresso shots, and some nice hats, the top three teams were crowned. Let's dive into the drinks that reigned supreme.
Star anise rinse
1.25 ounces Pierre Ferrand Ambre Cognac
0.75 ounces pepper-bacon fat-wash cold brew with Barista Parlor Ethiopia Gera Estate (washed process)
1 teaspoon Mexican cola reduction
3 dashes Peychaud’s Bitters
1 dash Bitter Truth Celery Bitters
Stir ingredients with ice. Serve up. Express with lemon, garnish with fennel and star anise. Spritz with St. George Absinthe before serving.
Second Place: Evan Holder (Barista Parlor) and Andrew Hannigan (Rolf and Daughters)
1.5 ounces Stolen Smoked Rum
0.75 ounces Barista Parlor Colombia El Cascabel cold brew
0.25 ounces lemon demerara syrup
0.5 ounces Bodegas Yuste Aurora Oloroso sherry
0.25 ounces Carpano Antica Formula sweet vermouth
2 dashes Angostura bitters
Rinse glass with Stolen Jamaican Overproof Rum. Mix ingredients in tumbler. Light rinse in glass and douse with cocktail. Garnish with cocktail-infused blueberry covered in Trinidad chocolate.
First Place: Robbie Melton and Adam Milikin (Steadfast Coffee)
“The Bitter End”
Combine ingredients and stir with ice. Serve up and express with grapefruit.
Evan C. Jones is a Sprudge.com contributor based in St. Louis. Read more Evan C. Jones on Sprudge.