Vancouver is poised to host the inaugural Speed Rack Canada event, which brings together female bartenders in a fast-paced drink-slinging competition for a terrific cause.
The finals will take place on Saturday, May 2 during the EAT! Vancouver at BC Place expo and tasting event.
During the finals, the competing bartenders are tasked with making drinks from a carefully curated list of possible concoctions, until one triumphant lady remains standing. Admission to the event is by donation, with the funds going to the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation B.C. + Yukon, and includes cocktails made with Speed Rack Canada’s premium spirits sponsors.
Female bartenders from across Canada sent in applications and videos, and the entries were reviewed and winnowed down to include the final participants, representing four major cities and their respective cocktail scenes. Odds are heavily in favour of the cocktail-loving host city, too, with an impressive roster of nine Vancouverite women ready to shake it up, Speed Rack-style.
The judging panel at Speed Rack Canada will feature such leading cocktail-world luminaries as: Dale DeGroff (worldrenowned cocktail historian and writer), Jennifer English (James Beard award-winning founder of Food & Wine Radio Network), Wendy McGuinness (Bar Manager, Chambar Restaurant) and David Wolowidnyk (Bar Manager, West Restaurant and Cin-Cin Ristorante). The evening will be emceed by award winning bartender Gerard “Gez” McAlpine (Keefer Bar).
Here is the list of finalists for the first ever Speed Rack Canada:
Anna Wood, Boulevard Kitchen & Oyster Bar
Annie Cottrell, The Acorn
Kaitlyn Stewart, Boulevard Kitchen & Oyster Bar
Katie Ingram, UVA Wine & Cocktail Bar
Kelsey Ramage, The Oakwood Canadian Bistro
Kylie Bartlett, Blacktail
Lauren Maxwell, Chambar Restaurant
Natalie Hadley, Cinema Public House
Sabrine Dhaliwal, West Restaurant
Rebecca Davis, Bonterra
Samantha Casuga, Anju Restaurant
Evelyn Chick, The Harbord Room
Juliana Wolkowski, Bar Raval
Leah Mucciarone, Bar Isabel
Marie (Chantelle) Gabino, Parts & Labour
Veronica Rachelle Saye, Food & Liquor
Melanie Aumais, Maison Sociale
Val Chagnon, Le Mal Nécessaire
When: Saturday, May 2, 2015 (1 to 5 p.m.)
Where: Banquet Ballroom of BC Place, 777 Pacific Boulevard, Downtown
Cost: $25 + tax in advance, $30 at the door. Event ticket includes complimentary ticket to EAT! Vancouver on Saturday, May 2 (10 a.m. to 9 p.m.)
Vancity Buzz is proud to be the exclusive online sponsor of EAT! Vancouver