Last weekend, City Roots hosted another cocktail challenge. Instead of the blank canvas of vodka as the base spirit, this competition featured Casamigos Tequila, a small batch, 100 percent agave tequila, heavily branded with the celebrity of its co-founder, George Clooney.
Bartenders representing Bourbon, Goatfeathers, Henry’s, Kelly’s, Motor Supply Co., The Oak Table, Rosso, Saki Tumi, Saluda’s, Speakeasy, Terra and The Whig served unique cocktails incorporating Casamigos, along with a local ingredient and whatever else they wished. (I served as one of the judges, along with Anne Postic of Fig Columbia, Susan Ardis of The State and Casamigos brand ambassador Maria Lehman.)
With each event, the competition seems to get tougher. Some of the most elaborate and creative cocktails proved divisive with my fellow judges, but two cocktails emerged at the top of our scorecards when the numbers were tallied. Once again, Rosso and Bourbon got the highest marks from the judges. (The popular vote went to Saki Tumi’s Sunset Beet.)
This week’s featured drink is from Rosso. General manager Mandi Ranalli says she started by infusing Casamigos Reposado with habaneros, but found the heat to be too intense. She added a cardamom-infused blood orange shrub she made from scratch, along with some Cannonborough ginger beer from Charleston. Even with the acidulation of the vinegar in the shrub, and the dilution with soda, the habanero infusion still gave off too much heat. A splash of prosecco proved the finishing touch that brought it into balance. It was served over a frozen habanero encased in a king cube of ice.
Great Gifts for the Whole Family
Don’t miss Half Moon Outfitters’ holiday sale! Up to 30% off Prana, Patagonia, The North Face, and other great brands. Location and hours here.
Relaxation, Pain Management, and Stress Relief
Licensed massage therapist Allison Morris of AMR Massage offers 50% off your first session and every 5th session free of charge. Click here for location, hours, and more information.
Ice Skate on Main Street
Columbia’s famously hot skating rink is now open! Additional information and discounts can be found here.
Going someplace cool this weekend?
Let The Backpacker help you go lightweight, comfortable and in style! Patagonia, Prana, Merrell, The North Face and more! Click for location, hours and more info.
A Family-Friendly New Year’s Eve Carnival
From 6-11 PM on December 31st on Main Street, enjoy rides, games, karaoke, food, drinks and more! More information here.
New Year’s Eve at Social
Don’t miss this Black and White Affair featuring Kap Slap. Tickets available online!
SEARCH FREE TIMES
Holiday Wish ListWhere to shop for gift ideas in Columbia this season:
F/T and P/T avail. Must have a clean driving record, organized and have a prof appearance. Please call for an interview or email resume to Kerry@crystalpool.com. Must bring a copy of your Driving record and a list of all past employers with duration of employment listed as well as telephone numbers for references. Call 803-865-1200
U.S. Security Associates
Now hiring immediately for armed and unarmed security officers. WE TRAIN YOU! Columbia & surrounding areas. ussecurityassociates.com