First Annual Clovis Cocktail Contest Crowns Best Cocktails and More (Video HL)

The Clovis Roundup’s Clovis Cocktail Contest, benefiting the Clovis Senior Activity Center, was held on Saturday, Sept 21 and Sunday, Sept 22. The event was fun and exciting for everyone who participated.

The bartenders competed for Judge’s Choice, People’s Choice and in a special 86’d competition.

The 86’d competition, held on Saturday, was framed after the popular Food Network cooking show, Chopped. Two competitors went head to head mixing drinks using two of six surprise ingredients chosen by the Clovis Roundup. They had 10 minutes to whip up three glasses of their concoctions and then present them to the three judges. The surprise secret ingredients they had to choose from were: Pomegranate, ginger, fig, pickle juice, Korean BBQ beef jerky and activated charcoal.


Six bartenders took part with Mike “Turtles” Hunsaker from Michelangelo’s taking first place with his drink using ginger and fig as his special ingredients. Kathryn Mascola, bartender at DiCicco’s, took second place using ginger and pomegranate.

Nobody dared experiment with the activated charcoal.

The Judge’s Choice competition, held on Sunday, involved the bartenders mixing up their favorite drink and presenting it to the judges to be judged on aroma, balance, flavor, presentation and overall creativity. First place went to Kathryn Mascola and her Blackberry Gondola. Second place was awarded to “Turtles” Hunsaker for his Kentucky Tropic.

The People’s Choice award went to Riley’s Brew Pub bartender Jean Jacobsen for her Blackberry Smash.

Bobby Salazar’s came in first for most donations raised for the Clovis Senior Activity Center.

Honorable Mentions must go to Cool Hand Luke’s staff who really stepped up to the plate with assistance and team spirit. A special thanks goes to Jackie Hunsaker, for stepping in when another bartender had to drop out due to illness.

Clovis Roundup would like to thank everyone who participated: DiCicco’s, Michelangelo’s, Bobby Salazar’s, PressBox Sports Grill, Cool Hand Luke’s, Yosemite Falls Cafe and Riley’s Brew Pub. Thank you, also, to the host and judges for donating your time and helping to make such a special night: Roy Sizemore, Sarah Primavera, Jim Nakamura, Valerie Hill, Joseph Zenith, Shonna Halterman, Moni Randolph, Heather Frantzich and Jody Jo Mize.

Heather Jamieson-Brown
Heather Jamieson-Brown studied journalism at Fresno City College where she acted as a reporter for the award winning Fresno City Rampage, but took a break to be a caregiver for her ailing father who had Parkinson’s disease. She has three grown children and has lived in Clovis for 16 years. Heather has always loved reading books set in the American Old West, but rarely found any with strong female protagonists, thus, she wrote one. She is currently working as a reporter/journalist for the Clovis Roundup.