Haiti Fundraisers, Cocktail Classic Speakers and Alchemist Honors

Weeks after the initial earthquake struck, fundraisers for Haiti continued. Many of NYC’s bar stars — including Aisha Sharpe, Willy Shine, Brian Van Flandern, Charlotte Voisey, Lisa Hare, Erin Williams, Hal Wolin, Jim Meehan, Dale DeGroff, Miguel Aranda, Naren Young, Lynette Marrero and many others — showed up at Brooklyn’s Bar Celona for “Hearts and Cocktails,” which raised $5,283 for the Red Cross and its relief work in Haiti. Members of the United States Bartenders’ Guild (USBG) and Ladies United for the Preservation of Endangered Cocktails (LUPEC) volunteered their expertise as well.

Organizers of the Manhattan Cocktail Classic, to be held May 14-18, are now accepting applications for educational seminars. Anyone may apply. Applications will be accepted until Monday, Feb. 15. To request the full seminar submission information and application instructions, e-mail [email protected].

New York’s Damon Dyer was named Benedictine and Esquire magazine’s “Alchemist of Our Age” in honor of the French spirit’s historic 500th anniversary. Dyer’s cocktail, The Monte Cassino, is equal parts Benedictine, Yellow Chartreuse, fresh lemon juice and Rittenhouse Rye, and its taste convinced the judges — brand ambassador Ludovic Miazga and cocktail writer and Esquire’s drinks correspondent David Wondrich. Attendees also chose their favorite drink, which came in the form of San Francisco’s Brandon Clements’ Greyhound’s Tooth, made with Benedictine, vodka, fresh grapefruit juice, house-made grapefruit bitters and sugar. Other competitors included Boston’s Jackson Cannon, New Orleans’ Daniel Victory and Chicago’s Lynn House.

Damon Dyer

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