A Nationwide Craft Cocktail Competition Attracting the Best Bartenders in the Country
*Online Submissions Begin March 1*
Austin, TX (March 1, 2022) – Garrison Brothers, the award-wining and beloved first-legal Texas bourbon distillery, is proud to announce its annual cocktail competition: The 2022 Bourbon Brawl. The search for Bourbon Brawl Bartender of the Year begins with open online submissions beginning on March 1, 2022. Bourbon Brawl, in its fourth year, will take submissions from all over the country with a focus on five key markets; Orange County, Chicago, New York City, Tampa and Houston. The competition includes three phases: Online Submissions, Semi-Finals, Finals.
“Being able to bring the country’s best bartenders together to compete in our annual Bourbon Brawl is so much fun. I can’t wait to review all the cocktail recipe submissions and then meet the best of the best in Austin for the finals. This Garrison Brothers competition is about supporting our hospitality community while making new friends,” shares Dan Garrison, Founder, Garrison Brothers Distillery.
Each year, the competition attracts some of the best bartenders and cocktail enthusiasts in the country. This year’s winner will receive $10,000.00, a Single Barrel of Garrison Brothers Bourbon (15-gallon barrel, for personal consumption only), and a coveted judging position in the 2023 Bourbon Brawl Bartending Competition. Prizing is provided by ShakeStir.com, the world’s largest online community for spirited professionals. The winning cocktail during the last round at the Finals will also be made into a cocktail kit for fans and bourbon lovers to order on Cocktail Courier the week following the conclusion of the competition.
The annual competition seeks to award the person who displays the best in total breadth and aptitude as a professional bartender, encompasses notable knowledge of Garrison Brothers Distillery, has the ability to understand and create balanced cocktails, demonstrates technical skill, maintains cleanliness and bar-side manner, and has an overall impressive presentation style mixed with genuine hospitality.
Online Submissions | March 1st, 2022 – April 12th, 2022
Bartenders across the United States can submit their best cocktail recipes using Small Batch Bourbon to a panel of experts to review and decide who will advance to the semi-final round. The winners of the semi-finals will be announced via email and Garrison Brothers’ social media channels on April 19, 2022.
The Semi-Finals | May 9th, 2022 – June 6th, 2022
Bartenders will be assigned to the closest applicable geographical market totaling 5 bartenders for each region. The semi-finals will be taking place in-person across five regions:
Orange County 6/6
The semi-finals attended judges and invited industry professionals, takes place in two rounds. Bartenders will present their online cocktail submission to be critiqued and scored by the judging panel, in round one. In round two, the bartenders will batch the cocktail for other industry professionals to taste and vote on. The bartender with the top score from each market will advance on to the final round in Austin, Texas.
The Finals | June 30th, 2022
One bartender from each of the semi-final markets will advance onto the final round taking place in Austin, Texas. This event will be open to the public. It includes three rounds. The first round will feature batched cocktails prepared by each bartender for consumers to try and vote on. The second round tasks each bartender with presenting a new cocktail using Garrison Brothers HoneyDew Bourbon on-stage in front of a panel of industry judges. The bartenders with the two highest scores will advance to the third round where they will be challenged to craft a new cocktail from a table of mystery ingredients. Both cocktails will be presented to the panel of industry judges to critique. The top scoring bartender will be named the Garrison Brothers Bourbon Brawl Bartender of the Year.
For more information on the format of the competition, read the full rules document here. The winning cocktail from round three at the Finals will be available for purchase as the Garrison Brothers Bourbon Brawl Cocktail Kit via Cocktail Courier from July 7 – August 4, 2022.
Bourbon Brawl 2021 crowned Orange County’s Josh Davey as the winner with “Texas Rose”, his crafted and modern take on a whiskey sour. The eight finalists that competed in the 2021 finals in Austin were Katherine Parsons (Oakland, CA), Davíd León Jr. (Chicago, IL), Josh Davey (Orange County, CA), Nicole Salicetti (New York, NY), Madeline Kaye (Tampa, FL), Malachi Boykin (Houston, TX), Chris Hazelwood, (Dallas/Ft. Worth, TX), and Kenny Daniels (Austin/San Antonio, TX). They were hosted by Texas’ own Daytripper PBS Show Host, Chet Garner and the seven judges were; Garrison Brothers Founder, Dan Garrison, Nathaniel Wilson II – Director of Spirits, The Berns Group (Tampa), Christian Orlando – Beverage Director, The Stand NYC (New York), Thomas Mizuno-Moore – Senior Beverage Manager, Lettuce Entertain You (Chicago), Anthony Cozeck IV – Bar Director, Comstock Saloon (San Francisco), Chris Gialanella -Group Publisher, Modern Luxury (Los Angeles), and Adam Robb- Journalist (New York, NY).
Bourbon Brawl is an annual competition that was created by Garrison Brothers in 2019 to connect and cultivate community within the hospitality industry as well as reward and amplify the talented creatives within craft cocktails world. Garrison Brothers is sold throughout the Continental U.S and across the world in seven other countries including Japan and Canada. For more information on Garrison Brothers and to shop online, go to https://www.garrisonbros.com/shop
For the competition’s complete rules and regulations, go to https://www.texasmonthly.com/event/bourbon-brawl-2022/
ABOUT GARRISON BROTHERS DISTILLERY
Garrison Brothers Distillery is a small farm and ranch located in the beautiful Texas Hill Country that authentically produces straight bourbon whiskey. Garrison Brothers introduced the first bourbon whiskey legally made in Texas in 2010 and has since developed a rabid fan base. They currently have a waitlist of more than 18,000 just to volunteer on bottling days, and their Cowboy Bourbon™ normally sells out within hours of its release. Garrison Brothers is the first legal bourbon distillery in Texas history and is one of the first distilleries in America outside of Kentucky to produce authentic, handmade bourbon whiskey—and only bourbon whiskey. The business was founded in 2006.
Every expression of Garrison Brothers bourbon is made from a sweet mash bill and barrel-aged in the intense Texas climate. The extreme heat creates multiple aging seasons in a year, resulting in a darker, richer, and fuller bourbon; bolder than almost any other bourbon on the market.
At the San Francisco World Spirits Competition in 2021, Garrison Brothers’ Laguna Madre was awarded the Double Gold Medal along with one Silver Medal for Single Barrel and three Bronze Medals. For the Denver International Spirits Competition, Garrison Brothers won Best of Show for 2021, taking 1st place for their Cowboy Bourbon. Jim Murray’s Whisky Bible awarded “American Micro Whiskey of the Year to Balmorhea Twice-Barreled Bourbon for 2019, 2020 and 2021. Garrison Brothers was voted Best Craft Whiskey Distillery in America by readers of USA Today in 2017.
Garrison Brothers is a proud and active member of the communities of Blanco, Fredericksburg, Hye, Johnson City, and Stonewall. The distillery and its barrel barns are open to the public for tours in Hye, Texas. Anyone interested in learning more about Garrison Brothers Bourbon or in taking a tour of the distillery should visit garrisonbros.com or follow @garrisonbros on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
ABOUT TEXAS MONTHLY
Texas Monthly publishes vivid, longform storytelling about the Lone Star State, along with reported analysis of its most important trends, and helpful advice on how to best enjoy the state’s many pleasures. Founded in 1973 as a print magazine, Texas Monthly has expanded to serve its audience on multiple platforms, including TexasMonthly.com, live events, videos, and binge-worthy podcasts. It has won 14 National Magazine awards, the Oscars of its industry, and reaches a total monthly audience across all platforms of 33.8 million people. Follow Texas Monthly on Facebook @texas.monthly.magazine, Twitter @TexasMonthly, and Instagram @texasmonthly.