Six Local Mixologists to Compete for $500 Friday, Nov. 16

Ten area bartenders will put their skills to the test in the first Fall Bartending Competition, sponsored by The Weekender and hosted by Coconuts Island Grill in Centralia.

Location Map
The event will take place from 7 to 9 p.m. Friday, Nov. 16.

The top prize is $500. Spectators are encouraged to attend and cheer on the boozy action.

The contest features bartenders from the Lucky Eagle Casino, The Junction Bar and Grill, Ramblin’ Jack’s Rib-Eye, Bub’s Pub and Coconuts Island Grill.

“It’s all by The Weekender,” said Chronicle and Weekender Media Specialist Manager Lindy Waring. “We just thought it would be a great way to promote The Weekender by getting together for a bartending competition.”

Emceeing the event will be Todd Chaput and state Rep. Richard DeBolt. They, along with Waring, will be joined as judges by two member of the crowd who will be selected through a raffle.

Aside from the honor of serving as judge for the contest, there will be raffles for prizes as well, with certificates from Lucky Eagle Casino and Shilo Inn up for grabs.

As for the competition itself, it’s a head-to-head tournament with multiple rounds.

In round one, contestants will go head to head after pulling from a pool of drinks. Competitors will have three minutes to make the drink. The maker of the top drink, as chosen by the judges, will move on.

Round two is the speed round.

Competitors will have one minute to make four drinks in order — a Long Island Iced Tea, a Cuba Libre, a Kamikaze and a beer pour into a pint glass. The winners move on to the semifinals.

In the third round, competitors will again draw from a pool of drinks. They will then have three minutes to make that drink with the top scores moving to the final round.

In the finals, the remaining bartenders will have three minutes to make their own “signature drink.” After that, they’ll be given three minutes to make a drink drawn from the pool of possibilities.

Judges will be scoring bartenders throughout the competition on creativity and innovation, speed and efficiency, presentation and style, and flavor.

Chris Agee

Chris Agee

Lucky Eagle

Favorite Drinking Song:

“Saturday Night” by Panic at the Disco!

Signature Cocktail:

Wild Pixie

Favorite Customer Experience:

Working in a resort in southeast Georgia, a guy asked for a glass of water. We were just small talking when he asked for a refill. I left and came back to a $100 bill under the glass and no guy to be found. 

John “Parrish” Preston

John “Parrish” Preston

Lucky Eagle

Favorite Cocktail:

Hemingway Daiquiri.

Favorite Drinking Song:

“Mr. Brightside” by The Killers.

Signature Cocktail:

Capri Sun

Deb Strange Byrn

Deb Strange Byrn

Lucky Eagle

Favorite Customer Experience:

Every time a guest is satisfied with my custom Orange Margarita or the special mixed drink they request it gives me a boost and makes my day that much better. Favorite Drinking Song: Jose Cuervo.

Signature Drink:

Orange Margarita.

Jeffery James

Jeffery James

The Junction

Favorite Drinking Song:

“Drinking Problem”

Signature Cocktail:

Waverunner.

Favorite Cocktail:

Red Wine

Rebecca McCleskey

Rebecca McCleskey

The Junction

Favorite Drinking Song:

“Sipping on Some Syrup” by 36Mafia

Best Customer Experience:

I’d have to say all of them. That’s why I love bartending. Every customer has such a different story and I appreciate and relate to all of them and I’m happy to allow them to come be served by me, someone who isn’t or won’t judge them no matter how crazy they may get. Whether it’s over a divorce, breakup, birthday, death in the family, family reunion, date, after-work party, or just the stop on the way home from a long day’s work. Every experience is different and unique in it’s own way.

Favorite Cocktail:

Tennessee Whiskey

Signature Cocktail:

Moscow Mule

Hollie Hutchings

Hollie Hutchings

The Junction

Signature Cocktail:

Green Tea Shot

Shauna Lowther

Shauna Lowther

Bub’s Pub

Favorite Customer Experience:

Anytime customers are nice and keep coming back.

Favorite Drinking Song:

“I Love This Bar” by Toby Keith

Signature Cocktail:

Tom Collins

Stephanee Stedham

Stephanee Stedham

Coconuts

Favorite Drinking Song:

Never Growing Up.

Favorite Customer Experience:

When a customer appreciates you just for listening.

Signature Cocktail:

Sex in a Palm Tree

Stephanee Stedham

Stephanee Stedham

Coconuts

Favorite Drinking Song:

“Big Money” by Lil Skies.

Favorite Customer Experience:

When a customer’s eyes light up as soon as you bring their food/drink.

Signature Cocktail:

Raspberry Press

Selena Revel

Selena Revel

Ramblin’ Jack’s Rib-Eye

Favorite Drinking Song:

“Have a Drink on Me” by AC/DC.

Favorite Customer Experience:

I used to wait on a couple during happy hour every week. Twice a week, they always asked to try a different drink and would ask their opinion on new recipes.  After two years, they opened their own bar. Their drink menu was an homage to my love of fresh fruits and shaken cocktails, and I was so proud to inspire such driven people. Last I checked, they had expanded to a second location and their signature strawberry margarita that is made with fresh buddle fruits is still the same one I made them eight years ago. Still my favorite customers from those days.Their bar is the Shaken Bar in Puyallup and Eatonville.

Signature Cocktail:

Carmel mudslide