Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Tanduay USA Asian Rum Mixologist Competition - Home Restaurant Branford CT

Tanduay Rum USA recently held a bartender's competition featuring drinks made with Tanduay Rum at Home Restaurant in Branford CT. Though I was familiar with the brand name, it would be my first time sampling a cocktail made with this spirit. I coudn't wait!

I had always thought that rum was only produced in Latin American or Caribbean countries but I soon learned that Tanduay Rum is made from sugar cane grown in the Philippines, where the fragrant rain, tropical climate, and fresh rural air contribute to the distinctive Tanduay flavor. This delightful rum is the product of a combination of sugar cane juice, Philippine water, a single yeast, and fermented molasses that has been aged for 5-years in a charred oak barrel.. (Source: Tanduay Rum USA/Discover)

We arrived early which allowed us to sample a few of the Tanduay Rum specialty cocktail drinks that Home Restaurant was offering that evening in honor of the event. My favorite was the Philippine Rum Punch, made with a combination of both Gold and Silver Tanduay Rum, and a blend of exotic fruit juices. It was the perfect blend of hearty rum and sweet juice.

Home Restaurant - Tanduay Drink Specials
Bartender's Competition - March 2014

And while the bartenders were setting up and prepping for the contest, the nice folks at Home Restaurant treated us to a wide array of appetizers. We sampled everything from crab cakes to beef stew bites to pickled beet crostini to sliders. How good were they? Just take a look at the bottom right hand side of the picture below at the hands grabbing at those sliders!

Home Restaurant Appetizers

On to the competition!

Participants from restaurants throughout Connecticut competed for the right to the be Connecticut Tanduay Mixologist Champion! Competing were bartenders from Wood-n-Tap, Quench, Post 154, The Chelsea, Forbidden City, Oak Haven Table and Grille, The Cask Republic, Max Fish, and Home Restaurant.

Tanduay Rum Bartender's Contest Competitors

Judging the contest were the following:

Carl Carrion: Culinary Director of the SKAL Restaurant Group
Rowena White: Sales Manager - Special Events for Connoisseur Media
David Brogan: Master Mixologist, TV Personality and owner of "Signature David"
Adam Zengou: Bartender at Brennan's Shebeen and Bartender of the Year in 2012 for Fairfield County by Advocate poll

After Mari, the Tanduay representative, gathered the entrants together, she introduced the judges, sounded the Asian Gong, and got the competition started!

Cocktails were judged on the following points of criterion: (a) Taste, (b) Drink Presentation, (c) Overall Presentation, and (d) Overall Creativity.

After each contestant prepared their cocktail, a sample was offered to everyone in attendance.

And here's a sample of some of the contestants creations

Tanduay Rum USA Cocktails
(L) Tanduay Thunder  from Wood-n-Tap (M)  Thrilla in Manilla from Quench  (R) Liquid Turtle from Post 154

Everyone had a wonderful time cheering on their favorite cocktails, establishments, and contestants! The first ever Tanduay Mixologist Contest was a rousing success!

Congratulations to the winning cocktail, the el arĂ¡ndano (the blueberry) mojito style cocktail, entered by the Cask Republic!

Home Restaurant is located at 1114 Main Street in Branford CT. Follow them on facebook at /HomeBranford.

Follow Tanduay USA Asian Rum on ==> twitter, ==> facebook, and==> instagram. Look for @TanduayUSA!

Additional pictures of this event are found on the Home Place Blog's facebook page HERE and while you're there, don't forget to "like" us!

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