NEW ROCHELLE, N.Y. -- For the second year in a row, Barenjager Honey Liqueur is kicking off the brand's national annual bartender competition. While the Barenjager Bartender Competition initially focused on New York area bar talent, this year's contest, like last year's, invites national* bartenders as well as amateurs to submit innovative cocktails using Barenjager Honey Liqueur. With an A-list lineup of celebrity judges and a grand prize that includes a trip for two to Oktoberfest in Munich, contestants are encouraged to fight for their honey using bar smarts and creativity.
This year's competition coincides with Barenjager's September 2011 release of its new premium packaging — a more contemporary homage to the spirit's unique history and lore. The new packaging reflects Barenjager's premium position and embodies the brand's unique personality and character. All cocktail submissions should aim to reflect these same qualities.
The panel of judges includes five nationally acclaimed industry mentors. Joining returning judge Dushan Zaric of Employees Only & Macao Trading Co. are four industry powerhouses: "King Cocktail" and master mixologist Dale DeGroff, acclaimed spirits writer and mixologist David Wondrich, Todd Richman — corporate mixologist at Sidney Frank Importing Company, Inc., and famed bar talent Aisha Sharpe of Contemporary Cocktails, Inc.
These esteemed judges will score all submissions prior to selecting the top 6 recipes to move on to the final round. Finalists will mix off at a private event at the bar downstairs at Andaz 5th Avenue for media and industry heavyweights this September 19th in New York City. The contest winner, chosen by the judges, will also receive the grand prize: an all-expense paid trip for two to Oktoberfest 2011 in Munich, Germany and $1,000 in cash to sweeten the pot. Additionally, all guests will be asked to cast their vote for best cocktail, and the audience favorite will take home a check for $1,000.
"Last year's competition was fierce and the finalists created wonderful drinks," says returning judge Dushan Zaric. "We're hoping to see even more cocktail mastery from this year's submissions and are looking forward to another wonderful battle for the Best Barenjager drink!"
To enter the competition, visit www.barenjagerhoney.com and complete the online registration form by August 22, 2011. Must be at least 21 years of age to enter. No purchase necessary. The official rules and regulations can also be found on this site.
During the 15th century, the Eastern Prussian bear trap company, Teucke & Konig, first introduced Barenjager, a honey liqueur which translates to "Bear Hunter." In an effort to end the struggle between man and bear, this sweet concoction was the first professionally produced Meschkinnes - mead-like moonshine made from honey by beekeepers and farmers - and was formulated to aid hunters attract bears and lure them from their dwellings. The alluring spirit's recipe was slightly altered in the 18th century and continues to serve as the original honey liqueur enjoyed around the world today.
Made in Germany, Barenjager is a 70 proof honey liqueur made from neutral grain alcohol and pure premium natural honey from Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula. Each liter bottle contains 300 grams of pure honey and other natural ingredients resulting in a subtly sweet, spicy and herb edged taste profile. Barenjager Honey Liqueur is available in the United States in the liter, 750ml, 375ml, and 50ml sizes.
*Contest is not open to residents of Texas, Washington, California, Tennessee, Alaska and Hawaiii.