Tracker Pixel for Entry

It’s Tiki Time!

by Chris Larson | .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) | Cocktail Showdown | February 14th, 2018

Designed by Raul GomezThis year’s Cocktail Showdown yielded a mixture of familiar and fresh faces to compete in the Fifth Annual Bartenders Battle when it returns to the Holiday Inn on Sunday February 18th. With a bright and colorful Tiki theme, we encourage you to bust out the island attire and join us, as eight of the best bartenders in town compete for an array of prizes that is bigger and better than ever before.

We highly suggest you consider a VIP table of 8, which allows you early entry into the event and once again includes a swag bag, a spirits sampling from Republic National Distributing and a tiki buffet. These tickets can be purchased through eventbrite.com, where you can find the event by searching for High Plains Reader. This year we have upped the value of VIP tables and added a local craft beer sampling, featuring brews from Fargo Brewing Company, Drekker, Kilstone, and Prairie Brothers.

Standing-room-only tickets will be available at the door, and include a night that features eight of the best bartenders in town going head to head, in a timed contest that includes mystery ingredients every round (including a local craft beer cocktail round) and a whole lot of excitement and energy.

There will also be a tiki costume contest and performances by Blue Belles Burlesque and DJ Dextrious throughout the evening. Our MCs this year will be Erik Block and last year’s Bartenders Battle Champion, Elijah Larson. Yet again this year, you will be able to see all the action up close and personal through Livewire Entertainment’s closed circuit cameras that will bring live shots to big screens on either side of the stage.

This event is really all about showcasing the talent of the locals and this year’s field is as strong as ever and features return contestants, contestants from a few years back, and first-time competitors who will each bring their own unique skills and approach to creating craft cocktails. Let’s take another quick look at the fine folks who are ready to shake things up in this years Bartenders Battle.

Competitor: Josh Goedtke, Boiler Room

History: Empire, Radisson, Holiday Inn Detroit Lakes, Woody’s

Favorite Ingredient: My favorite ingredients always change but I have been using blueberries a lot because I love them.

Favorite Mixology Trend: As far as trends go I think people are looking more towards what each bartender can make, which gives all of us more options and chances to make new fun and exciting drinks.

Competitor: Adam Nehk, Barbacoa/Great Plains Hospitality

History: Mexican Village, Rhombus Guys, Bulldog

Favorite Ingredient: I try to make as many of my own ingredients from scratch as I can. Bitters, tinctures, scrubs, syrups, fat washes, rapid infusions, etc. The more you create yourself, the more unique the drink is to you.

Favorite Mixology Trend: I try to see what is possible, then twist those trends into something new. Overall, a good balance of flavors is the thing I strive for the most.

Competitor: Molly Fontaine, Holiday Inn

History: Tom and Jerry’s Bar

Favorite Ingredient: Any ingredient I have yet to work with.

Favorite Mixology Trend: I think my trend is just sticking true to the integrity of the classic standards; from the history of the cocktails to understanding how they are meant to taste, to the proper execution, right down to the garnish and serving.

Competitor: Aaron Duma, Sanctuary Events Center

History: Northern/Basement Bar, HoDo Lounge, Broken Axe, Usher’s House

Favorite Ingredient: I know it has become cliche, but local, local, local. I love highlighting local products at our venues. It amazes me that some people still don't know Fargo has its own distillery. It's our duty to be the ambassadors of these great local products and help get them to the masses. I am happy to oblige.

Favorite Mixology Trend: I have spent the last few years serving the masses at concerts and events, so the challenge for me is to offer quality cocktails that our bartenders are able to execute in a timely manner. Unique spins on Mules, Lemonades, and Sangrias have been solid go-to’s.

Competitor: Jarad Tandberg, HoDo Lounge

History: HoDo Lounge

Favorite Ingredient: Tequila is my favorite spirit to work with at the moment

Favorite Mixology Trend: Variations on classics. I really like making different variations of a smash when given the opportunity.

Competitor: Maggie Green, Blarney Stone

History: Outback Steakhouse, Spitfire, McCormick and Schmicks in Portland, Oregon

Favorite Ingredient: It depends on the day but I would say my favorites are whiskey and ginger.

Favorite Mixology Trend: It is hard to pinpoint one theme or trend because the whole industry is so exciting right now. It feels like there are new ingredients and techniques popping up every day and it's hard to just stay in one lane.

Competitor: Judd Eskildsen, Proof Artisan Distillers

History: Toasted Frog, O’Leary’s

Favorite Ingredient: Proof recently bottled a bunch of Crooked Furrow Harvest Blend Bourbon, and we’ve all been having lots of fun playing around with that behind the bar and in the kitchen.

Favorite Mixology Trend: I hear craft distilleries/breweries, buying local and chef-inspired cocktails are huge right now!

Competitor: Chris Staloch, Tru Blu

History: Lucky’s 13

Favorite Ingredient: Anything fresh. I love that the Bar and the kitchen are becoming one as far as ingredients go.

Favorite Mixology Trend: I like the creativeness that bartenders from all over the world are being able to express. It’s more than just pouring a captain coke anymore. Although there is nothing wrong with a captain and coke.

Recently in:

BISMARCK – Backed by police and educators, state legislators hope to curb violent crime and rising suicide rates by proposing bipartisan legislation that would allow police to temporarily confiscate firearms from those deemed…

It is no secret that our world is becoming more and more computerized. Over the course of a few decades, computers and the Internet have transformed from being solely objects of luxury or business to a ubiquitous part of 21st…

Wednesday, January 23, at 6-8 p.m.Plains Art Museum, 704 1st Ave. N, FargoMeet featured artists and learn about the Human Rights Arts Festival. The North Dakota Human Rights Arts Festival is a traveling juried exhibition that…

A couple of days before Christmas, a video of “Virgin Island Vicky,” went viral. Her real name is irrelevant, but she’s a Minot native. The video shows her going on multiple public racist rants while she and her beau were on…

The Epic Battle Between Milk And WaterI didn’t realize our neighbor state Wisconsin had over 15,000 lakes until I Googled. Well, it might depend on how you count them according to size and acreage. We know that Minnesota has…

FARGO - A collection of memories from High Plains Reader's annual Cocktail Showdown. Participants were judged on creativity, flavor, and presentation; and this year we added a new category. Like years before, each establishment was…

All About Food

​Curry in a Hurry

by HPR Contributor

By Nataly Routledgenatalyroutledge@googlemail.com My least favorite thing about being a college student is the limited selection of food that I am comfortable making with minimal ingredients and minimal effort. Plus, I liked to try…

Music

To Broadway and back

by HPR Contributor

By Ryan Jankeryan.janke78@gmail.comCelebration of Women and Their Music kicks off this Thursday at the Spirit Room in Fargo, and Nina Grollman will be back in town to light up the stage with a brand-new sound. High Plains Reader…

Compared to the Betsy West and Julie Cohen documentary “RBG,” Mimi Leder’s period biographical slice “On the Basis of Sex” is nowhere near as notorious as one might hope, but the hagiographic reverence for Ruth Bader…

By Nataly Routledgenatalyroutledge@googlemail.com"Snowgeese" for Charles BeckBy Timothy MurphyThe flock is whorled like a translucent shelland intricate as the tubing of a horn,its embouchure, the soft foot of a snaillighting on…

by Ryan Jankeryan.janke78@gmail.comFargo-Moorhead Community Theatre presents “A Christmas Story: The Musical” which is underway at the Stage at Island Park and will run through December 22. It has been promoted as a show both…

Those who have been reading my articles for a while may remember when I interviewed Zachary Tooker about the Level Two Comedy Club at the Radisson in Fargo. While the club may have unfortunately closed, Tooker has not ceased…

by Gabrielle Herschgabbyhersch@gmail.comphotography by Logan MacraeEver wish you could go to your favorite brewery without leaving your house? Finally, you can (sort of). Kilstone Brewing is now doing limited can releases of some…

I’m a big man, I’m tall and powerful, but this also causes some issues in the body department. I suffer from acute scoliosis in my lower back, and pain radiates from this area on a daily basis. I have only ever had one massage…

by Devin Joubertdevinlillianjoubert@gmail.comIt’s that beautiful time of the year that’s filled with seasonal decorations, sparkly lights, warm family gatherings, and delicious feasts. I love everything about this time of the…

By Gary Olsonolsong@moravian.edu"People spend so much time mocking Trump or waiting for him to be impeached. And the danger with this kind of obsession with a single person is that you don’t see the system that produced him."—…