Whether garnished with umbrellas or bacon, you've hopefully drunk many exceptional cocktails in 2015. Maybe they came with sound advice, too, whether regarding the healing effects of Fernet or how to survive an earthquake. Now's the time to show your appreciation: It's time to cast your vote for Bartender of the Year. Vote below, and the winner will be announced on Monday, November 16, during the 2015 Eater Awards, our sixth annual celebration of all that's made the restaurant world run — and run wild — in the past 12 months.
Here are the 2015 nominees: Jesse Card of Bit House Saloon, Lisa Hare of Victoria, Tommy Klus of La Moule, Ryan Magarian of Hamlet, and Alise Moffatt of Shift Drinks. Jesse Card earned his place by a creating a pedal-to-the-metal bar program involving everything from exclusive barrels of bourbon to boozy Otter Pops at Bit House Saloon. Opening Victoria, Lisa Hare presented "The Princess Bride" movie-themed drinks that were all the more crowd-pleasing thanks to a variety of influences, from tiki to tea. At La Moule, Tommy Klus invented a breezy menu of European-influenced cocktails and aromatic aperitifs capable of transporting imbibers to swanky shorelines around the world. Ryan Magarian opened up a fine world at Hamlet we didn't even know we needed: that of pairing cured pork with sherry-and-fresh-fruit cocktails. And Alise Moffatt created a inviting place for late-night revelers and service industry pros to party after everyone else has gone to bed, developing a large shot selection and cocktails tinged with amari, vermouths, and sherries.
Here's how the voting works: Eater editors have named nominees in Portland for each of five major categories. Eater readers will vote, narrowing the nominees to three finalists. From those three finalists, the Eater editorial team will select a winner. Ready to play your part? This poll will be open for 24 hours; voting irregularities will be strictly policed.