I took my judging job seriously during the DeKuyper Mix Master Bartender Contest at Saturday's Denver Food & Wine event, tasting eight cocktails. Really tasting eight cocktails, since these were complex concoctions (a DeKuyper product had to be part of the mix) that demanded my full attention.
The ultimate victor: Ken Kody of Bacaro in Boulder, whose winning drink was named Amnesia, appropriately enough.
Here's how to make it: In a mixing cup, blend 2 parts DeKuyper Ragin' Root Beer Schnapps plus 1 part DeKuyper Hot Damn plus 1 part Irish Cream. Serve in a shot glass.
My personal favorite?
The Curious George, concocted by Nick Kropp, a bartender at Happy Noodle House. It was made with Basil Hayden -- the alcohol equivalent of bacon, in my opinion. It makes everything better.
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Here's how to make it: In a mixing cup, blend 1.5 oz (Basil Hayden's) Bourbon plus 1.5 oz DeKuyper's Crème de Banana plus 0.25 oz fresh lemon juice (with a squeeze of egg white). Shake with ice, strain into cocktail glass with banana as garnish.