N.O. bartender in ‘Imaginative’ finals

New Orleans mixologist Amber Peterson on Monday will compete for the title of “Nation’s Most Imaginative Bartender” in the United States Bartenders’ Guild’s finals competition sponsored by Bombay Sapphire gin.

Peterson, who works at Apolline Restaurant, will be showcasing her “Rose Nylund” recipe made with Bombay Sapphire, Martini Bianco and rose water during the competition in Las Vegas.

The USBG, the leading organization of beverage service professionals, hosted the regional finals of the “Most Imaginative Bartender” competition, featuring some of the most promising mixology talent in New Orleans.

A series of challenging timed sessions and blind tastings were conducted by a panel of industry judges who considered appearance, aroma, imagination and taste in naming Peterson the winner.

At the USBG Most Imaginative Bartender Finals, Peterson will share the stage with 39 of the country’s top mixologists for a chance at the title of “Nation’s Most Imaginative Bartender,” plus a cover feature of GQ magazine’s “Men of the Year” December 2014 issue. If she takes the title in Las Vegas, Peterson also will be the U.S. representative in the 2015 Global Finals.

“It’s an absolute honor to have the opportunity to be nationally recognized in my field. To be able to compete alongside some of the most talented bartenders across the nation is something very few will have a chance to do, and I’m looking forward to seeing how far I can go against the best of the best,” Peterson said. “There’s so much emerging talent in the bartending field around the country, and the USBG and Bombay Sapphire are really doing a great service by bringing the craft of bartenders to the forefront.”