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Movers & Shakers

Meet Gentleman Jack Culture Shaker Craft Cocktail Competition Winners

Arcy Law - First Place

Service & Beverage Manager, M'tucci's

I am originally from… I was born and raised in Albuquerque.  

When I'm not working... My fiancé and I love to travel places, often chasing food and beverage regions. Also, an avid golfer and motorcyclist who enjoys cooking, making beer, and drinking whiskey.

When the pandemic hit… I was very fortunate to be working with M'tucci's. My role with the company kept me working through the pandemic, primarily with our food delivery and curbside service. However, COVID greatly impacted our overall service offering, costing us many great team members and a severe drought in revenue. Thankfully, we were able to survive when so many great restaurants were not.

I enjoy creating craft cocktails because… There is joy in making craft cocktails because it brings enjoyment to others. In addition, crafting opens opportunities to educate our community and get to know many folks on a personal level. I firmly believe we reach our guests through our craft, and that's a great feeling.

My favorite cocktail to drink is… Folks will laugh, but I love a simple Daiquiri, but you can't go wrong with a Guinness and a shot of rye!

The Culture Shakers Cocktail Competition was… The experience was thrilling, the competition was well run, and the judging panel was great. I couldn't have asked for a better competition to participate in. 

Picante Sour 

1oz Fresh Lemon Juice

1oz Maple-Chipotle Syrup

1.5oz Herradura Anejo Tequila

1 Egg white

Mix, shake, and pour. Garnish With Peychaud's Bitters and a Mint Leaf

Megan Lees -  Second Place

Bart Manager / Director of Marketing at Bourbon & Boots

I am originally from… Templeton, CA. I moved out here over 11 years ago and received a degree in Evolutionary Anthropology. UNM brought me here, but the people and vibes have kept me here.

When I'm not working... I love binge-watching Asian dramas, sampling new spirits, trying new restaurants with my partner, and singing "I will survive!" from Gloria Gaynor when I clean.

When the pandemic hit… I felt lost, anxious, and also weirdly free. I could sleep whenever, read, take online classes, do a movie with drink+food pairings. It was surreal! I returned to work, and after several internal moves and additional shutdowns, I took the Food & Beverage Director role. Now I share my knowledge and passion with the bartenders at my venues.

The Culture Shakers Cocktail Competition was... the first competition I've competed in since before the pandemic, and it meant so much to me. It brought me back together with the community I missed seeing, and it allowed me to do something that I love so much.

I enjoy creating craft cocktails because… I loved creating flavors and mixing colors and smells from memories. It's my way to paint a picture of my life through craft cocktailing.

My favorite cocktail to drink… I tend to be a very seasonal drinker, but my heart will always get pulled to an Oaxacan Old Fashioned.

A Flower From a Gentleman

Add 2oz of Hibiscus Tea combined with lemon, honey (edible glitter, recommended)

1.5oz Gentleman Jack

2.25oz Vanilla Rice Milk

6-8 Mint leaves 

Muddle some mint leaves with vanilla rice milk, then add the rest of the ingredients and shake.  Strain and pour in a wine glass filled 3/4 with ice.  Add a fresh sprig of mint and hibiscus flower.  

Noemi Leon -  Third Place

Food & Beverage Manager at Hotel Albuquerque

I am originally from… a super small town called Wellsburg, WV. After undergrad, I decided to join my mom here for new opportunities and diversity. I picked up my first bartending job in Albuquerque to help pay my way through graduate school and ended up falling absolutely in love with it! 

When I'm not working... I love spending time with my friends, walking my dog, going to the gym, and cooking for family and friends. I love traveling and attending different music festivals.

When the pandemic hit…  Bourbon & Boots had just opened when state-mandated closures hit. Like many others, I experienced a great deal of loss, and my mental wellness was at an all-time low. In the fall, I found a job with Hollow Spirits Distillery, which gave me hope, drive, and a re-imagined love of craft cocktails. Finally, after what seemed like a lifetime, Bourbon & Boots could reopen, and I couldn't have been happier to get back behind MY bar!

I enjoy creating craft cocktails because… much like I enjoy creating things in the kitchen, making craft cocktails is a way to let my creativity shine. Nothing is better than throwing something together, feeling proud of it, and wanting to share it with others!

My favorite cocktail to drink is…. a Nikle Vodka Martini, but a traditional or flavored whiskey sour is a close second.

The Culture Shakers Cocktail Competition was… amazing. It was only my third competition - and my peers have always been and were so welcoming and helpful once again. The atmosphere was exciting and fun, and I'd love to be back for the next event!

The Tequi-Lime Pie Sour

2 ounces Herradura Silver tequila

1 1/4 ounce coconut purée

1 1/4 ounces fresh lime juice 

3 dashes of orange bitters

One egg white

Double shake—dry shake without ice 1-munite, add ice and shake for another minute, strain into a glass without ice, and top with lime zest.

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