Ocean Vodka and the Sheraton Maui are teaming up to create the Ultimate Ocean Cocktail competition. Since excellent, locally made organic liquor and award-winning resorts make a great marriage, attending the final leg of their competition this Saturday is a no brainer.
The competition opened in July by asking hard-working booze slingers to submit recipes starring Ocean Vodka. There will be two winners, one national and one from Hawaii. There were 58 recipes submitted 38 were from Hawaii. Winners in each category will receive a stay at the Sheraton Maui Resort and Spa and their winning cocktail will appear on the resort’s menus for a year.
“You can be a professional bartender or spirits aficionado, an amateur mixologist, backyard bartender, or anything in between,” says Ocean Vodka CEO Shay Smith, in a press release.
This competition stands out from others because it’s the attendees at the Saturday night mix-off that will determine the Hawaii state winner, not some high falutin’ booze expert judging panel. While the nationals will be determined by that kind of panel of professionals, both winners will be announced at the event on Saturday at 7:30pm.
Cocktail culture enthusiasts should be read to kick in $69 to attend the competition. The event starts with a pupu reception, where you get to meet the competitors, sip their concoctions and throw in your vote.
This year, the final top four in the state are all from Maui. Gabriel Harvey has the Mill Camp Mojito featuring shiso, calamansi and kim chee powder; Matthew Corbin will make the Lokelani, a complex concoction of dragon fruit, raspberries, rose petals and meringue; Brian Connor will bring his Ocean Laule’a, a refresher with prosecco, coconut water, strawberries and ginger; and Dennis Day has the Ginger Hoku, an exotic smash of papaya, ginger beer and pressed sugar cane.
The drinks are paired with award winning Chef Raymond Nicasio’s pupu menu: Mill camp Mojito goes with an Asian beef tostada with pickled vegetable and kimchee aioli; the Ginger Hoku matches with a Saffron shrimp cocktail with ginger-mint apple relish; the Ocean Laule’a pairs with a strawberry caprese with mozzarella cheese and cherry tomato; and finally the Lokelani pairs with fried oysters with lemon and balsamic vinegar.
Following the reception, there will be a three-course meal paired with wine. It includes an amuse buche of seared ahi with tomato confit and pinot grigio, roasted beet salad and cambria, fillet of beef with béarnaise and a fantastic Charles Krug. Wow.
For more information or reservations visit Sheraton-maui.com/dining/holidays/oceanrecipe.