Todd Stewart is a bartender with flare.
The 29-year-old Canadian, who works at Breezes By The Bay in George Town, came out on top after the shake up to invent and name the signature cocktail to be served at the opening of the Boatswain’s Beach Adventure Marine Park in January 2006.
Todd was really mixing it when he christened his invention ‘Broken Down Shark Cage’.
His creation, which won a trophy and a cheque for $1,000, was made up of three-quarters of an ounce of Bacardi O; another three-quarters of an ounce of Bacardi Coconut; Island Oasis mixer; grenadine, which gives the effect of blood running down the side of the glass; banana liquor and, to finish it all off, the glass is garnished with a sugared rim.
Todd held off a challenge from Cambi, who runs Sapphire Bar on the Island – but there was another honour for Breezes when Todd’s buddy, colleague and fellow Canadian Gary Carlson tied for third place in the competition.
Livi Kwong from the Treasure Island Lobby Bar added a touch of Oriental beauty to the occasion as she joined in the fun behind the bar, and the audience lapped up every minute of the floodlit event by the beach last Thursday night.
‘I am a flare bartender. That’s what I do all day at Breezes, but I knew this competition wasn’t about flare, it was about the drink and how it tasted,’ Todd said.
‘I concentrated on that, but threw in a little bit of flare just for the audience.’
It’s the first time Todd, who hails from Vancouver Island, has won anything like this, but he fancied his chances right from the start even though he didn’t complete his preparations until minutes before entering the event.
‘I was invited to compete on the Tuesday at 4pm, made the drink on Wednesday and came up with the name while sitting at Royal Palms having a Corona while I waited for my turn on the Thursday,’ said Todd.
‘I thought my chances of winning were great when I heard that I was not one of the three to tie for third place.
‘Cambi was second with a Martini, but I knew that wasn’t the type of drink the judges were really looking for. Cambi is a smart guy and he was entering to help promote his business.
‘I haven’t heard whether I will be involved at Boatswain’s Beach.
‘They told me to drop by with my CV, but I’m more than happy at Breezes. It’s a great bar with an awesome view from the upstairs balcony over the harbour,’ added Todd, who has been on Island for 18 months and has no plans to leave just yet.