Rosangel Gran Centenario Los Angeles Launch Party
Glorious days are these when a brand’s own infused spirits are actually quite delicious. Centenario’s new Rosangel, an hibiscus infused, port wood aged reposado tequila is just that, delicious. At first the tequila is slightly floral on the nose with the hibiscus shining through, as well as traditional vegetal and almost peppery notes found in 100% blue agave reposados. Except this one is a bit different once it hits the lips. The time seen in oak barrels that had once housed port, helps soften the spirit and make it very accesible to the tequila uninitiated. Without being sweet, the hibiscus and port wood aging play very well together striking a sultry and delicate balance. I would be just fine to sip this one on its own in a snifter.
To commemorate the event Malo hosted the Rosangel Gran Centenario Cocktail Competition in their newly renovated upstairs area. The evening was also meant to showcase some of LA’s top female mixologists. A noble cause indeed because who doesn’t think well crafted cocktails by our female counterparts are sexy. I certainly respect the notion.
The competition itself was realized in two parts. First the cocktails were to be judged by a panel of local professional palates, Chuck Taggart of GumboPages.com, LA bartending luminary Marcos Tello, (pictured to the left judging in fabulous drag) and Catherine Schimenti, Craft pastry chef and 2009 James Beard Award nominee. Second came the People’s Choice vote of public opinion. Both winners will be featured in the upcoming “LA Cocktail Book” with the judges pick taking home $250 cash and $150 for the peoples choice winner. Not too bad for an evening hanging out with friends and crafting a few cocktails.
Taking home the Grand Prize was Matty Eggleston of The Hungry Cat fame. Leading him to victory was his wonderful cocktail “The Lullaby” featuring Rosangel and freakin Nutella! Here’s the recipe for those with some extra Nutella sitting around in your pantry.
4 oz. Gran Centenario Rosangel
3 Tbs Nutella
1/2 Cup of Whole Milk
In a frothing tin, steam milk and 1/2 cup of whole milk with 3 tbs Nutella. Steam until warm and & agitate with barspoon. Add 4 oz. of Gran Centenario Rosangel and steam a moment more. Pour into 4 teacups or larger espresso cups. Garnish with a light dusting of freshly grated cinnamon and orange zest.
Taking home the People’s Choice vote was the lovely Silamith Weir, LA brand market manager for the wonderful Martin Miller’s Gin. In her cocktail Casa Blanco, she managed to incorporate several ingredients not known for playing well together, with stunning results. Here’s the recipe for the adventurous.
2 oz. Gran Centenario Rosangel
1/2 oz. Matusalem Gran Reserva
3-4 Chunks of Pineapple
4 Basil leaves (shredded)
1/2 oz. Sweetened Condensed Milk
1/2 oz. Simple Syrup 3/4 oz. Lime Juice
Muddle pineapple and basil together. Add all other ingredients and shake vigorously. Strain and double strain into cocktail glass.
Other finalists included Mark Blackhart with his Angels Apiary:
- 1.75oz Rosangel
- .75oz 3 Olives Citrus Vodka
- .5oz Matusalem Reserva
- .5oz honey
- 2 dashes Peychaud Bitters
- vanilla bean garnish
Juan Alvarez, President of the LA Chapter USBG offered up his St. Rose cocktail:
- 2oz Rosangel
- 1oz St. Germain
- 1/2 of a grapefruit
- 4 basil leaves
- splash of guava juice
And rounding out the competition was Jason Bran, head bartender at SBE’s XIV, with his Ramos Rose:
- 1.5 oz Rosangel
- 1oz pink grapefruit juice
- .5oz Creme di Cassis
- 1/2 an egg white
- 5 drops orange flower water (I was asked by Jason to report that Ballandale orange flower water is complete shit) more on that later. . .
Although there was only one female finalist, keeping in the theme of the evening, a few others were on hand to satiate a very thirsty crowd with their own Rosangel concotions. Local talent included, Kylee Van Dillen (Westside Tavern) Kim Haasarud (Liquid Architecture) Tina Brandelli, and Author and mixologist extrodinaire Natalie Bovis-Nelsen of The Liquid Muse , who offered up her Flor de Maria cocktail:
“Flor de Maria”
1/4 ounce Luxardo maraschino liqueur
1/2 ounce homemade hibiscus cabernet syrup (hibiscus tea syrup with a cabernet reduction)
3/4 ounce lemon juice
1 1/2 ounces Gran Centenario Rosangel Tequila
Spritz orange flower water
lemon zest for garnish
1 – 2″ piece orange zest
Muddle orange zest in the bottom of a cocktail glass. Add maraschino liqueur, syrup, lemon juice and tequila. Shake, with ice. Strain into a cocktail glass. Spritz with orange flower water. Garnish with a sliver of lemon zest.
In a word, delicious.
Thanks to all those involved and to all the participants for working so hard and producing some world class libations. I definitely left Malo absolutely satisfied and harboring a wonderful buzz. Now if I only could find my car. . .