Posted by

The Bourbon Classic’s Friday night Cocktail & Culinary Challenge brought together seventeen teams of chefs and master bartenders from sponsoring distilleries for a competition featuring cocktail and small plate pairings. The challenge was to create dishes that incorporated Kentucky Proud products – ingredients grown, raised, or processed in Kentucky.

Angel’s Envy Distillery, Kentucky Peerless Distilling Co., James B. Beam Distilling Co., Horse Soldier Bourbon, Barrel Craft Spirits, and Bourbon Barrel Foods were among the top brands featured in the winning cocktails and dishes at the Bourbon Classic’s Friday night Cocktail & Culinary Challenge, each expertly paired and mixed by the talented bartenders and chefs representing partnering restaurants.

A panel of expert judges tasted and evaluated each of the creative and delectable dishes. In a new twist for 2023, attendees had the chance to vote for their favorite cocktail, small plate, and pairing via the Bourbon Classic app.

Here are the highlights from this exciting event, and get a taste of the finest culinary creations made with Kentucky’s best ingredients.

As The Bourbon Classic just shared the winners with us here at we think you will enjoy this list:

Judges’ Choice Best Cocktail

Representing Angel’s Envy Distillery
Bartender: Mike Bohn, Angel’s Envy Distillery
Cocktail: Medjool of the Nile

Judges’ Choice Best Small Plate

Representing Angel’s Envy Distillery
Chef Noam Bilitzer, Meesh Meesh Mediterranean
Dish: Freedom Run Smoked Lamb Hummus with Pomegranates, Jerusalem Artichokes, Pine Nuts and
Soft Herbs
Featuring: Lamb from Freedom Run Farm

Judges’ Choice Best Pairing

Representing Kentucky Peerless Distilling Co.
Bartender: Karla Green, Watch Hill Proper
Cocktail: The Peerless Archivist

Chef Michael Crouch, Watch Hill Proper
Dish: Marksbury Farm’s Pork Belly with Smoked Curry Coconut Cream, Pineapple Togarashi Jam and
Cucumber Blossom
Featuring: Pork Belly from Marksbury Farm and Togarashi and Smoked Curry from Bourbon Barrel Foods

People’s Choice Best Cocktail

Representing James B. Beam Distilling Co.
Bartender: Tin Le, The Kitchen Table
Cocktail: Straw Hat

People’s Choice Best Small Plate

Representing Horse Soldier Bourbon
Chef Chris Roth, Kentucky International Convention Center

Dish: Lexington Pasta with Bourbon, Bacon and Ricotta Stuffed Ravioli. Served with a Sailor & Smoke
Rubbed Berry Farms Brisket Burnt End and Horse Soldier Bourbon Local Honey Demi Cream
Featuring: Special Made Pasta from Lexington Pasta, Brisket from Berry Family Farms and Rub &
Marinades from Sailor & Smoke

People’s Choice Best Pairing

Representing Barrel Craft Spirits
Bartender: Oliver Miller, Red Hog Butcher Shop & Restaurant
Cocktail: Smooth Moves

Chef Katie Smith, Red Hog Butcher Shop & Restaurant
Dish: Smoked Red Hog Sausage
Featuring: Pork from Valley Spirit Farm, Mushrooms from Frondosa Farm and Sweet Potatoes from
Rootbound Farm


Love Whiskey? Join our weekly whiskey tasting events!

Bourbon Whiskey Tastings

Comments are closed.