The Italian Almanac

Patricia Richards

Italian News - June 20

Patricia Richards of Las Vegas will represent the United States in the 41st annual Bacardi Martini Grand Prix, a prestigious bartending competition in the world sanctioned by the International Bartenders Guild. More than 60 countries will be represented at this year's competition held in Turin, Italy.

As a teen, Richards began working in the restaurant business as a cook, then became a server and then moved to the bar. "I like to keep pushing within myself, to keep growing," she says. Six months ago she began creating her own cocktails, taking ideas from cooking shows on TV, and from courses at Southern Nevada Wine & Spirits.

Because she's a member of the United States Bartenders Guild, Richards was qualified to submit a drink recipe to the Bacardi contest. Her drink, Sunset Over Sicily, contains Bacardi Martini O Rum, Asti Spumante, Italian Lemoncello Liqueur and fresh oranges and blueberries. It was selected over the more than 200 recipes submitted by bartenders in the United States.

At the contest, Richards will be judged on three criteria, each judged by separate juries: Technical judges will verify the preparation technique of each competitor, evaluating merits and faults; the tasting jury examines the quality and appeal of the cocktail in appearance, sensory elements, and how the ingredients balance in the cocktail; and the image jury will evaluate the style, manner and appeal of the candidates and their capacity to represent the Bacardi Martini Style.

She will have five minutes to produce the cocktail.