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Bourbon and Opal nugget ice were flowing at the New2Lou cocktail competition hosted at FirstBuild, July 8th. The event was sponsored by Maker’s Mark and featured seven local bartenders that competed to have their drink crowned as the best of the competition. In addition to bragging rights, the bartender who the attendees picked as having the best drink, would be awarded a $500 prize from FirstBuild.


Each attendee was given seven drink tickets, enough to sample each cocktail that the bartenders had to offer. As the crowds arrived, the bartenders kicked it into high gear, having no time to pause until the end of the competition. Attendees were eager to sample all of the delicious creations and seemed impressed by the variety and creativity of the drinks.


With names like the “Kentucky Peach”, “Lost Thyme”, and even the “Fire and Ice and Would You Like S’more?”, the drinks were destined to please. The s’mores inspired drink was a major topic of conversation, as the s’mores cups were being freshly baked at the event, with the MozzaPi oven parked close by in the FirstBuild parking lot.


The event allowed people to get their first look at the Opal nugget ice maker, which will launch on Indiegogo at the end of the month. Most of the drinks at the event were served with nugget ice and the ice itself was event a point of conversation. Opal is a countertop nugget ice maker, which is currently in development at FirstBuild. Nugget ice in the home has long been a dream of ice enthusiasts, as nugget ice makers are typically only found in industrial-size models; FirstBuild hopes to change that with Opal.


Back to the drinks…the winning bartender was Jason Cobler, who regularly serves up drinks at Harvest in NuLu. His concoction was called the “Smith n Boswell Strawberry Punch” and it was as good as the name is long. The recipe consisted of Maker’s 46, strawberry syrup, lemon juice, strawberry bitters, and even a homemade strawberry fruit roll up.


Roughly 200 people attended the event, with proceeds benefiting the local non-profit Apron, Inc. To learn more about the Opal nugget ice maker, go to We look forward to seeing you at our next event, stay tuned!

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