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Spirit of Phoenix: Craft the City’s Signature Cocktail

Inspired by regional cocktails with legendary notoriety such as New York City's iconic Manhattan cocktail, Mayor Kate Gallego set on a mission to create Phoenix's first signature city cocktail. In partnership with Visit Phoenix, the Mayor's office collaborated with local cocktail industry professionals from award-winning bars such as Little Rituals Century Grand , and Garden Bar, among others. 

With that, the Spirit of Phoenix cocktail contest was born. We gave contestants very few rules. They needed to live in a Phoenix zip code, the cocktail had to be made via a "traditional" bar technique, a maximum of three house made ingredients could be used, no more than two ounces used for the base spirit, one full ounce had to be Milagro Tequila, and local and indigenous ingredients were encouraged. 

With those limitations set in place, Nicole Long of Santo Arcadia's recipe for "The Phoenix" came in at first place, voted on by residents of the city of Phoenix. The Santo Arcadia mixologist crafted a unique cocktail recipe that was selected as the cocktail most representative of our bold and diverse city. With homemade Chiltepin mesquite honey syrup, prickly pear fruit, and lemon juice from lemon’s picked by Nicole, her cocktail is a true garden-to-glass experience. 

 

The Winner

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The Phoenix Cocktail

Phoenix, say cheers to "The Phoenix"! Our very first official signature city cocktail.  

 

"The Phoenix" cocktail recipe:

Shake in tin with:

2 oz reposado Milagro

1 oz Chiltepines mesquite honey syrup

1 oz lemon juice

1/4 oz prickly pear

Garnish: Dehydrated lemon and peppers

The Phoenix

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The Phoenix Cocktail Contest 1200

How It Works

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How It Works 1200 Updated Revision

The Judges

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The Judges

 

Aaron DeFeo

Aaron DeFeo

Tucson native Aaron DeFeo is best known as the co-owner and Bar Director of the award-winning Little Rituals, a 75-seat reimagining of the hotel bar concept in Downtown Phoenix, as well as a founder of Stabyl Beverage Co. and a partner in Arizona Cocktail Weekend.

Jason Asher

Jason Asher

Jason Asher, a culinary maestro and celebrated mixologist from Phoenix, Arizona, is a founding partner of the acclaimed Barter & Shake. With over two decades of experience in the hospitality industry, Jason's expertise spans across mixology, spirits, and restaurant and bar operations.

Jax Donahue

Jax Donahue

Jax Donahue is the Former Beverage Director of Barter & Shake Creative Hospitality parent company owning Tales of the Cocktail 2023 Best US Cocktail Bar Century Grand including Platform18, Grey Hen and Undertow located in Phoenix, Arizona. He has very recently stepped away from Barter to pursue his own passions as Owner of Pour Form Consulting, a beverage hospitality consulting company he established in 2019.

Zach O’Haire

Zach O’Haire

Zach O’Haire is the founder of Distilled Hearts, a bar-forward industry consultancy located in downtown Phoenix, AZ.

Kim Haasarud

Kim Haasarud

Kim Haasarud, an award-winning mixologist and acclaimed author, began her journey as a bartender in 90s NYC. As the founder of Liquid Architecture LLC, her innovative touch has left a mark on clients worldwide, spanning hotels, restaurants, bars, and beverage brands.

Micah Olson

Micah Olson

Micah Olson is a sommelier and an award-winning bartender. He has over 25 years of experience in food and beverage, honing his craft at small local restaurants, luxury resorts and upscale cocktail bars before opening up the award winning restaurant and bar Crudo in 2013 and Okra in 2015 as co-owner and beverage director for the two restaurants and bars. Currently he is the beverage director for Arizona Distilling Co. where he can be involved in the whole process of cocktail making from start to finish.

Shannon A. Krol

Shannon A. Krol

Shannon is a seasoned industry professional renowned for her expertise in beverage and event planning. With a proven track record of tackling challenges and wearing multiple hats, she has become a trusted consultant andpartner in various self-employed ventures.

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