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Moonshine cocktail competition at Shady Lady Saloon

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Shady Lady Saloon will add a new white whiskey to its menu called Original Moonshine Clear Corn Whiskey, and to help introduce it, a cocktail competition will be held at 6 p.m. Monday.

White whiskey is different from other whiskey in that it hasn’t been aged in the barrel, or if it has, it’s not for very long, Shady Lady co-owner Jason Boggs said.

There are no guidelines for the competition – just that the bartenders use the Moonshine corn-based whiskey as the main spirit.

Three judges will decide which cocktails win first, second and third prizes, with rewards of $500, $300 and $200, respectively.

The three judges are Chris Dooley,

head spirits director
 bar manager at Ella 

L Wine Lounge
; Sara Berry of Southern Wine & Spirits and Michael Keltsch, a representative from Moonshine.

“For me, it’s going to be hilarious and fun,” Boggs said. “(The bartenders) have been here all last week practicing.”

He said the bartenders will compete, one at a time, to make a cocktail for the judges.

“You’re gonna see all sorts of creative syrups, smoked ice and (homemade) tinctures,” he added.

Dezi Bush is one of the bartenders competing. She has worked at Shady Lady since February.

“I’ve been obsessing over this cocktail and having nightmares about it,” Bush said.

“It was a hard spirit to work with because it’s a corn whiskey. A lot of ingredients I put in it lost the integrity of the spirit,” she said.

“I feel like everyone who works here is a cocktail geek,” she said and added that she thinks there will be some tough competition.

From 4 p.m. – close, there will be five different Moonshine specialty cocktails available for $5:

  • Virginia Peach – summer peach muddled with Moonshine, fresh lemon juice, Falernum and fortified wine
  • Dogwood – blackberries, lemon juice, Moonshine and Aperol. Garnished with a blackberry nested in a lemon peel
  • Swamp Fire – Rosemary leaves, cola syrup, ginger syrup, lime juice, aromatic bitters and Moonshine 
  • Golden Spike – Cognac, Jasmine Tea Syrup, citrus, Moonshine and spiced bitters
  • Surveyor’s Cup – Mint leaves, maraschino, Orgeat syrup, lemon juice, celery bitters and Moonshine 

Patrons can also order any of the new drinks made during the competition Monday and going forward.

“(It’ll be) a great time to see some great bartenders battle it out,” Boggs added.

Shady Lady Saloon is located at 1409 R St. 

Editorial Note: A correction has been made to this story after it was published. The incorrect information has been struck out and the correct information has been added.

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