The Austin Chronicle

Official Drink of Austin Competition is Back

By Gracie Salem, February 15, 2014, 3:25pm, On the Range

The Austin Food and Wine Alliance and David Alan, aka the Tipsy Texan, are bringing back the Official Drink of Austin competition in style.

The event began over a decade ago, took a brief hiatus, and is back this year to celebrate Austin’s vibrant bar and craft cocktail scene. It will be held at the AT&T Executive Education and Conference Center on February 20th from 7 - 10 pm. If you are into food and drink at all, this is the night for you.

In years past, individual bartenders competed, but this year teams of bartenders from local watering holes submitted drink recipes based on locally-made spirits: a long drink, an up drink, and a shot. In the end, six teams were selected to shake their stuff in hopes of being voted the Official Drink of Austin. Competitors will include teams from qui, WeatherUp, drink.well., Four Seasons Hotel, Midnight Cowboy, and Whisler’s.

Local chefs offering tasty bites designed to pair with cocktails will be Josh Watkins and Plinio Sandalio of The Carillon, Mat Clouser of Swift’s Attic, Jean Pierre Lacoste from Frank, Lawrence Kocurek of TRACE, John Lichtenberger of Peche, Kristine Kittrell of WeatherUp, Eric Silverstein from The Peached Tortilla, Peter Maffei of Finn & Porter, Scott Higby of TRIO, Anthony Sobotik and Chad Palmatier of Lick’s Honest Ice Cream, and Camden Stuerzenberger of Fork & Vine.

Celebrity judges include Aaron Franklin of Franklin Barbecue, Alba Huerta of Anvil Bar & Refuge in Houston, 2011 contest winner Jason Kosmas of 86 Company, Houston Eaves from Esquire Tavern in San Antonio, Matthew Odam from the Austin American Statesman, and Grammy-winning guitarist Adrian Quesada of Groupo Fantasma.

Tickets get you the chance to sample cocktails featuring Texas spirits, nosh on appetizers, and also taste the Official Drink of Austin contest entries while enjoying tunes by popular Austin DJ ulovei. No serious cocktail aficionado will want to miss this soiree.

Through this weekend, Austin Food and Wine Alliance is offering discounted tickets: two tickets for $90, or one for $45. Monday the price will return to $65 a piece. Tickets can be purchased here.

Official Drink of Austin Competition

AT&T Executive Education & Conference Center

1900 University

Austin Food & Wine Alliance

Thursday, Feb. 20, 7-10pm

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