Competition to Create the City’s Best Martini Heats Up
Annual River Foundation Event Flows June 19
Shaken, on the rocks or with a twist—there’s no telling what this year’s competitors will offer up as their interpretation of the San Antonio River in a martini glass during the Fourth Annual RiverTini Pour-Off, an event that benefits the San Antonio River Foundation. The fundraiser is scheduled for June 19, 5:30 p.m. to7:30 p.m. at the Hyatt Regency San Antonio, 123 Losoya Street. The Hyatt Regency is the perfect location for the event: the San Antonio River literally flows through the hotel’s first level.
“We can’t imagine a better way to enjoy RiverTini than being on the river we’re working to enhance,” said Estela Avery, Executive Director of the San Antonio River Foundation. “It’s the perfect backdrop to showcase drinks designed to reflect the spirit, culture and vitality of the river that flows through our city.”
The RiverTini Pour-Off is an annual competition featuring some of the city’s top bars and restaurants mixing specialty martinis that reflect the fresh and lively spirit of the San Antonio River. Sponsored by the Hyatt Regency San Antonio and Republic National Distributing Company, all proceeds from the event benefit the San Antonio River Foundation. The event raises funds for the San Antonio River Foundation and celebrates the on-going efforts to bring recreation, public art and educational opportunities along the San Antonio River expansions, the Mission Reach and the Museum Reach.
A non-profit organization, the San Antonio River Foundation’s mission is to enhance the natural beauty, recreational use and public appreciation of the entire San Antonio River and its tributaries through Bexar, Wilson, Karnes and Goliad counties. The River Foundation works to provide amenities and enhancements not funded by public monies; opportunities that will allow residents and tourists alike to enjoy the river’s natural beauty, immerse themselves in its history and become thoughtful stewards of its future.
The Foundation’s ambitious projects range from installing exciting urban art pieces by renowned artists to creating unprecedented opportunities for education, recreation, reflection and interaction with nature along the entire river. The Foundation is the only non-profit involved in the San Antonio River Improvements Project.
Tickets for the event are $50 each and are on sale now through the event’s website, www.rivertini.com, as well as the River Foundation’s website, www.sariverfoundation.org. Tickets include entrance to the event to sample the creative martini masterpieces and fabulous hors d’oeuvres, as well as the opportunity to win fun door prizes. All guests must be 21 years or older. To keep up with the latest on RiverTini, follow RiverTini on Twitter, @rivertini, or on Facebook, Rivertini. Questions? Please contact Karen Kimbell with the San Antonio River Foundation at 210-224-2694 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Past martini concoctions have included such unique ingredients as sushi, pop-rocks, chocolate, cucumber and more—and who knows what this year’s competitors will dream up? There are 18 RiverTini Pour-Off competitors, each determined to claim the trophy: an oversized martini glass etched to commemorate the event. The 2012participants include last year’s champion, Cork Bar at Hotel Contessa; as well as Ácenar, Bohanan’s Restaurant & Bar, Brio Tuscan Grille, Coco Chocolate Lounge, Drink Texas, Esquire Tavern, Feast, Lüke San Antonio, Oro at Emily Morgan Hotel, Q on the Riverwalk at Hyatt Regency San Antonio, Achiote River Café at Grand Hyatt San Antonio, Quarry Hoffbrau, Ruth’s Chris Steak House, Soho Wine and Martini Bar, Tiki Bar Cocktail Lounge at El Tropicano Hotel, V-bar at Hotel Valencia, and Zinc Bistro & Wine Bar.
The martinis will be critiqued by a panel of five judges: Chef David Kellaway, Managing Director of the Culinary Institute of America; Cassandra Lazenby, co-host of FOX 29’s Daytime@Nine; Jennifer McInnis, Wine and Spirits Writer for the San Antonio Express News; Richard Ojeda, El Rey Feo 2012; and Robert Olivarez with Republic National Distributing Company. The judges will be sequestered at a head table and will receive hand-delivered, full presentations of each martini.
Martinis will receive numerical scores on a 1 to 5 scale (1 being poor and 5 being great) based on flavor, uniqueness and appearance. Appearance will include beverage color, serving glass and garnish. Flavor scores will be based on overall initial flavor, mouth feel and aftertaste. Uniqueness refers to the “gee, I’ve never had a martini like this before” feeling.
And be sure to bring your smartphone with you: this year’s RiverTini guests can take home the martini recipes with the simple click of a button. Using QR code technology, all participant booths will have a QR code on the table. Guests are encouraged to capture the code to have their favorite RiverTini recipes at their fingertips.
Another treat in store for RiverTini guests: in conjunction with the Downtown Tuesday initiative, parking for RiverTini is free at all city-operated downtown lots, garages and meters from 5p.m. to 2 a.m. Hyatt Regency San Antonio will offer discounted pricing for RiverTini attendees, $6 for self-parking and $10 for valet.
Prizes and Pre-Parties, Oh My!
The fun of RiverTini doesn’t end with fabulous cocktails and tasty hors d’oeuvres. As part of RiverTini, the River Foundation is conducting a raffle of fabulous prizes. RiverTini raffle tickets are $100 a piece. Don’t wait until RiverTini to purchase your ticket—there probably won’t be any left as only 225tickets are available. Raffle tickets can be purchased by contacting the River Foundation at 210-224-2694. Tickets may be charged over the phone, or you can mail a check to the River Foundation at 100 E. Guenther, San Antonio, TX78204, and your tickets will be held for you to pick up at the River Foundation offices. If you chose not to pick up the tickets, your stub will be held for your and you’ll be notified if you are one of the winners. And you don’t have to be present at RiverTini to claim your prize, so if you’re not lucky enough to be able to make RiverTini, you may still be a winner. Raffle prizes include:
Summer in Vail (value – $4,500)
Experience heavenly Vail, Colorado in the summer. You and a guest will enjoy a four-night stay at Coldstream Condominiums in the Cascade Village area, donated by Robert Oliver. With nearby hike and bike trails and Gore Creek, which runs the length of the valley, you’ll find plenty of leisurely outdoor activities. Two round-trip air fare tickets donated by Alamo Travel will get you there and back!
Perfectly Prada (value – $1,430)
Show off your sleek and classic style with a Prada Black Shopping Tote with gold trim and buckle donated by Saks Fifth Avenue.
Private In-Home Dinner (value – $1,200)
Enjoy an amazing 4-course dinner for 12 by Vino30. Lavish and elegant or informal and festive, this is a great opportunity to host friends for an unforgettable evening of perfectly paired wines and outstanding food in the comfort of your own home. Let Vino30 and their private chef take care of the work and enjoy being host!
Pearl Vine Necklace (value – $1,200)
Pair this elegant vine drop-necklace with just about anything in your closet for a sophisticated look with a touch of mother nature. Crafted from 14K gold with pearl and donated by James Avery.
San Antonio Stay-cation (value – $800)
Get away from it all without the hassle of travelling across the globe. You and a friend will enjoy a two-night stay in the private condominium of Sally Buchanan, located in the heart of downtown on the top floor of the Casino Building. During your time away from home, experience total relaxation with a 50-minutemassage for each of you at Mokara Spa (includes complimentary valet parking).Don’t forget to eat! Delight in breakfast for two at the Original Mexican Restaurant, lunch for two at Rooftop Cafe, and dinner for two at Boudros.
And if you just can’t wait until June 19 to toast the River, some of the participating bars and restaurants will be holding pre-event happy hours, specials and more to get everyone in the mood for the big night. Bohanan’s will be doing it up on May 30th, while Ruth’s Chris Steak House will host a pre-RiverTini happy hour on June 7thfrom 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. To keep up with these events and be in the know on all things RiverTini, be sure to like RiverTini on Facebook and follow RiverTini on Twitter (@rivertini).
About the San Antonio River Foundation
The mission of the San Antonio River Foundation is to enhance the natural beauty, recreational use and public appreciation of the entire San Antonio River and its tributaries through Bexar, Wilson, Karnes and Goliad counties. Established in 2003, the foundation’s primary focus has been the San Antonio River Improvements Project, one of the country’s most exciting public works projects creating the longest linear urban park in the nation. The $400 million budgeted for the 15-mile project is slated to cover basic infrastructure needs; the San Antonio River Foundation’s role is to augment public funds with donations from corporations, foundations and individuals to fund the enhancements and additional amenities that will make this linear park world-class. For more information, visit www.sariverfoundation.org.