Cosmic Bartender Challenge

Greetings Cocktail Week Cosmonauts! Our Passports have yet to arrive, but you may now sample all of the entries into this year’s Cocktail Week Bartender Challenge! This year, we decided to launch the first leg of the competition early to give the community a chance to try all of the creative concoctions that our esteemed bartenders have dreamed up.

The assignment was: invent a drink that is inspired by any celestial body.

All bartender competition specials are $12, served at each of the competitors’ bars (noted with their name) throughout the month of January. Once you pick up your Cocktail Week Voyager’s Passport (arriving officially January 9th), vote for your favorite drink by dropping your ballot into an Official Bellingham Cocktail Week Ballot Box, available at any of the competitors’ bars through January 31. 

Community votes will be combined with judges’ scores to determine three finalists who will compete at the LIVE bartender competition at the Bellingham Cocktail Week finale at Rumors Cabaret, Sunday, Februrary 9th (time TBA). 


Below is a list of the entries into this year’s Bartender Challenge!


Rodney Chadwick 

Endgame Bellingham (118 W Holly St, Downtown)

Cosmic Background Radiation (CMB) – Tito’s Vodka, vanilla vodka, blue curacao, limoncello, midori and grenadine. Lemon and edible glitter garnish.


Alexander Staples 

Uisce Irish Pub (1319 Commercial St, Downtown)

The Desdemona – Bourbon, fresh lemon juice & honey syrup, topped with house made ginger beer and a mist of Laphroig. 


Allison Sutherland 

Galloway’s Cocktail Bar (1200 10th St #102, Fairhaven)

Out of This Whirl – House-infused citrus gin, Giffard Fruit de La passion, house grapefruit cordial, lemon juice, egg white. Angostura bitters and starfruit “whirlpool galaxy” garnish. 


Carey Gardner 

Skylark’s Hidden Cafe (1308 11th St, Fairhaven)

Stellar Evolution – Casamigos Mezcal, Ancho Reyes Verde, lemon juice, rosemary simple syrup, pomegranate Juice. Chili salt rim, blood orange wheel, and pomegranate seed garnish.


Emma Strutton 

Temple Bar (306 W Champion St, Downtown)

Black Hole Sun (aka Betelgeuse) – Saffron infused New Amsterdam gin, Yzaguirre Blanco Vermouth, St. George Bruto Americano. Black Ice sphere and edible “star dust” garnish. (Not vegan.) 


Haley Maier 

The Firefly Lounge (1015 N. State St, Downtown)

Cat’s Eye – Vodka, cranberry juice, peppermint simple syrup, Angostura aromatic bitters, spearmint, rosemary. Edible shimmer dust garnish. 


Hugh H. Newmark 

1-Up Lounge (1121 McKenzie Ave, Fairhaven)

Moons Over Mos Eisly – Amaretto, Malibu Rum, Rumchata, Eggnog. Cinnamon stick and fresh ground nutmeg garnish. 


Isaac Rogers 

Packer’s Kitchen + Bar at Semiahmoo Resort & Spa (9565 Semiahmoo Pkwy, Blaine)

Orion’s Nightcap – Screwball Peanut Butter Whiskey, Chambord, amaro, and Woodford Reserve Bourbon. Orange twist and a Woodford Bourbon Cherry garnish. 


J.D. Merris 

Fireside Martini Bar (416 W Bakerview Rd, Cordata)

The Golden Euro Nova – Gin, Malfy con Limone, Chartreuse, French pear liqueur, prosecco. Edible “golden” sugar rim & lemon twist garnish. 


Makenzie Helem 

Miller’s Back Door (1119 Railroad Ave, Downtown)

The Anchor – Plantation 3 Star Rum, Giffard Banana liqueur, lemon juice, Salish Sea Ginger Liqueur, Peychaud’s bitters, absinthe spritz. Coconut orange blossom foam garnish.


Matthew Twining 

Chuckanut Lobby Bar at SpringHill Suites by Marriott (4040 Northwest Ave, Bellingham)

Europa – Brachman’s, Birch Vodka, local birch syrup, expression of fresh lemon, topped with Prosecco. Birch, cranberry and turbinado sugar garnish. 


Nichole Miller 

Keenan’s at the Pier at The Chrysalis Inn & Spa Curio Collection by Hilton (804 10th St, Fairhaven)

Carl Sagan’s Cosmic Jellyfish – Empress Gin, fresh grapefruit, house sage & cinnamon syrup, Scrappy’s Grapefruit Bitters, egg white. “Space Dust” (edible glitter) garnish.


Riley White-Brainard 

The Filling Station (1138 Finnegan Way, Fairhaven & 716 Alabama St, Sunnyland Neighborhood)

SUNDIVER – Fennel Infused Wray and Nephew Overproof Rum, Plantation 3 Star Rum, Suze Gentian Liqueur, Cucumber Water, Citric Acid. Salt-Paprika-Black Pepper partial rim and fennel frond garnish. 


Shawndelle Gomez 

B-Town Kitchen & Raw Bar at Four Points by Sheraton (714 Lakeway Dr, Puget Neighborhood)

Solar Flare – Casamigos Mezcal, Ancho Chile Liqueur, bitters, lemon juice. Ancho chile brulee lemon wheel garnish. 


Stephen Hawk 

Bantam 46 (1327 Railroad Ave, Downtown)

Caldwell 15  – 3 Star Plantation Rum, house made Buddha’s hand syrup, green Chartreuse, pink peppercorns. Spun sugar garnish. 


Vinny Shipley 

Rock and Rye Oyster House (1145 N State St, Downtown)

Faux Luna – Basil Tomato Saline Gin, egg white, East India Sherry, lemon juice, Scarborough bitters, balsamic spritz. Basil and mozzarella skewer garnish.