Sip back & relax at the Tucson City of Gastronomy’s Cocktail Challenge

The annual event makes its return

For those looking for a cocktail that’ll knock their socks off, keep scrolling. the Tucson City of Gastronomy is shakin’ up the perfect event this month.

From 5:30 – 9 pm on Friday, October 21, six of Tucson’s finest mixologists will be creating concoctions and hoping for your vote in this year’s Cocktail Challenge. The crafty occasion is happening at TheMonicalocated at 40 E. Congress St.

Photo courtesy of Tucson City of Gastronomy on Facebook

The bartenders, who have yet to be announced, competing in the challenge are all mixologists from restaurants certified by the Tucson City of Gastronomy. The cocktails will showcase local and heritage ingredients with a big emphasis on the city’s terroir and gastronomic history.

The local beverage magician that stirs and mixes up the best cocktail will receive $250 and their cocktail will be named “TCoG Cocktail of the Year.” Over time, the cocktail will be featured at other various happenings in Tucson.

Tickets to this year’s event are $70 per person and include hors d’oeuvres prepared by chef Danny Pereztastings of each cocktail, and then an opportunity to vote.

Chef Danny Perez of The Monica (Photo courtesy of The Monica on Facebook)

Chef Danny Perez of The Monica (Photo courtesy of The Monica on Facebook)

Cocktail Challenge Dinner Menu

  • Shrimp Crudite – with a cucumber fresno relish
  • Hello Hemp Chipotle Tamalito – with a cilantro crema
  • Chicken artichoke skewer – with herb gremolata
  • Mushroom bruschetta
  • tepary bean hummus,
  • Top Chef’s Blackberry Carne Seca
  • Poblano Crema De Elote Soup Shooter
  • Cotija Corn Rib

Soon, the six mixologists competing in the Cocktail Challenge will be announced so stay tuned for more details as we get them.

The event is a fundraiser for the non-profit Tucson City of Gastronomy, which is the organization managing UNESCO’s designation of Tucson. Whenever possible, the group behind the scenes promotes talent and creativity among local farmers, ranchers, chefs, food workers, educational institutions, nonprofit organizations, and local food businesses.

The Monica is located at 40 E. Congress St. For more information and to purchase a ticket, visit

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