Visit Santa Barbara will host its third annual “Official Drink of Santa Barbara” Cocktail Contest from 5 to 8 p.m. June 20 at El Paseo Mexican Restaurant, 813 Anacapa St.
Last year’s craft cocktail contest winner was “Biltmore Fuerte” (“Biltmore Strong” in Spanish) by Ty Lounge at Four Seasons Resort The Biltmore Santa Barbara, which used Cutler’s Artisan Spirits’ 33 Bourbon as a base spirit and Super Bee Rescue “Thomas Wildfire Honey.”
“This will be the third year we’ve hosted the cocktail competition, and each year I’m impressed by the level of creativity put into each recipe submission,” said Visit Santa Barbara President and CEO Kathy Janega-Dykes. “Our mixologists have a passion for what they do and are true storytellers for the region, using local ingredients to present visitors and locals alike with one-of-a-kind cocktail that you can’t get anywhere else. Once again, we invite the public to attend, sample the cocktails and cheer on our local businesses.”
Local restaurants, bars and lounges were invited to develop a new, unique signature mixed drink that celebrates the distinctive attributes of The American Riviera. The creation had to include a spirit from Cutler’s Artisan Spirits, a locally owned, small-scale craft distillery located in the Funk Zone. Contestants were encouraged to use at least one local ingredient and take inspiration from Santa Barbara’s dramatic landscapes, architectural landmarks and culinary scene.
Businesses were asked to submit entries from April 29 to May 17 to the competition website. Then from May 20 to June 5, the public was able to view the entries posted, visit participating establishments to try drink submissions, and vote for their favorite entry.
Voting is now closed, and the five finalists that came out on top include:
• “The Glenn Annie” by Angel Oak at The Ritz-Carlton Bacara, Santa Barbara
• “Lucky Me” by Convivo at Santa Barbara Inn
• “Eucalyptus Lane” by Finch & Fork at the Kimpton Canary Hotel
• “The Queen’s Rose” by Finney’s Crafthouse & Kitchen
• “Sticky Fingers” by The Lark