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Blackbird Kitchen & Cocktails in Wantagh wins top cocktail at NY Cocktail Expo Long Island

The Hipster Cocktail Party, on the right, from

The Hipster Cocktail Party, on the right, from Blackbird Kitchen & Cocktails won the Best Cocktail award at Sunday's NY Cocktail Expo Long Island. Credit: Blackbird Kitchen & Cocktails

Blanco tequila, roasted cherry tomatoes, brûléed raspberries, calamansi syrup, orange bitters, ice.

Together, they form a riff on a Daisy called the Hipster Cocktail Party, a drink that the team at Wantagh’s Blackbird Kitchen & Cocktails concocted but was uncertain would be a strong contender at the NY Cocktail Expo Long Island.

On Sunday, it scored as Long Island’s top cocktail.

“What made this cocktail so good? We were kind of unsure about it Saturday night at 2 a.m.,” said Chris Perrotta, Blackbird’s chef and co-owner. “When we were batching it out, we liked it, but we didn’t know how much we liked it. We thought, ‘let the mixture sit overnight.’ ”

By the next day, Perrotta and his team — head bartender John Gonzalez, co-owner Frank Ubriaco, server Gabrielle Bebbino, and bartender Joanna Montanez — thought the Hipster Cocktail Party tasted “awesome.” So did a panel of judges at the expo, who voted it the Best Cocktail during the Sunday afternoon event at Mulcahy’s Pub & Concert Hall in Wantagh.

The drink — garnished with a sesame leaf and dehydrated lemon — bested dozens of other competing cocktails from 14 Long Island bars.

Sample sizes of those drinks were imbibed by the 600-or-so people who attended one of two sessions at the expo, said expo founder Matt Kourie. “It was like a street fair of different flavors,” said Kourie, from pomegranate molasses and chocolate to a pork-fat rinse and spray of tobacco tincture.

Sliding in at the number two and three spots, respectively, were Deer Park’s Verde Wine Bar & Restaurant and Jackson's Restaurant in Commack.

Will Blackbird patrons get a chance to try a Hipster Cocktail Party for themselves? “It’s going on the menu tomorrow,” Perrotta said.

Blackbird Kitchen & Cocktails, 3026 Merrick Rd., Wantagh. 516-654-9200,

Correction: The third-place winner of the  NY Cocktail Expo Long Island was misstated in an earlier version of this story. 


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