|On Yorkshire Day, August 1, while we were joining in the festivities at Wentbridge House with some of Yorkshire's finest chefs, the final of the Made in Yorkshire cocktail competition was taking place as 10 bartenders battled it out for the winning crown.
The winning cocktail is about to shake up the bartending world after judges named the inaugural winner as the "Sage & Onion Gibson
" by bartender Dean Railton from SkyLounge at the Mint Hotel
. His winning concoction proved to be the outright favourite of every one of the judges.The winner was crowned ‘Made in Yorkshire’s Best Bartender 2011’ and handed an engraved bespoke Alessi cocktail shaker trophy to display in their bar.
The final judges included Cocktail guru Simon Difford (Difford’s Guide and Class Magazine), Christine Austin (the Yorkshire Post’s wine and spirits expert), Douglas Blyde (gastronomer and contributor to Harper’s Wines & Spirits who has also written about this story on his blog), and Vikki Harris, Marketing Manager from Welcome to Yorkshire.
Dean Railton’s Sage & Onion Gibson has the added twist of our Lemon, Basil, Bay & Juniper-infused Vinegar Dressing and the recipe,below, will be circulated to bars across the county who will be encouraged to serve up the new creation to celebrate God’s Own County.
The Made in Yorkshire competition, run by SLB PR with support from Welcome to Yorkshire
, involved inviting bars from across Yorkshire to enter new, original cocktail recipes.
The brief was to use at least one key ingredient produced in Yorkshire and, after a series of heats, the 10 finalists shook, strained and poured in front of a panel of experts at the SkyLounge bar at Mint Hotel in Leeds on August 1.
Gary Verity, Chief Executive of Welcome to Yorkshire, said: “The idea behind the competition was to celebrate the countless array of high quality produce from our great county and for bartenders to use their talents to craft something new.
Not only has the competition showcased our many excellent bars, but it also helps promote Yorkshire as a cosmopolitan destination – and it would be great to see lots of bars serving up this winning Yorkshire cocktail.”
Winning bartender Dean Railton said: “It’s really overwhelming to win this cocktail competition and represent how great the Yorkshire bar scene is. It’s time for the bar scene in the North to make sure we’re always better than the South.”
Dean Railton’s Sage & Onion Gibson
|Sage and Onion Gibson, Photo Courtesy Douglas Blyde
15ml Womersley’s Lemon, Basil, Bay & Juniper Vinegar (available from DeliFresh, Bradford and Womersley Foods
15ml Noilly Prat Dry Vermouth
50ml Chase Potato Vodka
6 Sage Leaves
1 twist red onion
Put vinegar and Vermouth into a Boston glass
Press the six sage leaves into the mixture
Fill the glass with ice
Add the Potato Vodka
Stir until cold and delicious
Fine strain into a chilled Martini glass
Rim the lip of the glass with a sage leaf that has a drop of vinegar on it.
Garnish with the red onion twist and pop a bay leaf in the middle.