The fourth annual Portland Cocktail Week (PDXCW) opened Saturday in Portland, Oregon, bringing together bartenders, cocktail luminaries, and cocktail enthusiasts for a celebration of craft cocktail culture. Bartender education is one of the key components of PDXCW; this year over 1,000 bartenders applied for the 260 slots. Each will take classes in one of four major course studies offered by the Portland Bartender Institute (Advanced Craft Cocktail Bartending, Beyond the Bar, Bar Ownership, and Product Development). Classes will be held in Portland’s Downtown and Pearl Districts and are intended to improve bartenders’ technical skills as well as help them prepare for long-term career aspirations.
“The Portland Bar Institute not only covers spirits training,” said Jeffrey Morgenthaler of Clyde Common. “It also provides bartenders the tools to focus on developing individual professional aspirations – whether they be behind the bar, developing products, or building a personal brand.”
This year the major opening event was the “Swig n Swine,” a charity pig roast sponsored by the Bon Vivants of San Francisco as part of their Pig and Punch on the road program that supports different charities. This year's PDXCW event benefits Self Enhancement Inc. Charter School, a local nonprofit organization supporting at-risk urban youth.
The bash, which took place at the Jupiter Hotel, had the usual selection of new cocktails to sample. These were mixed in 50 gallon garbage cans (talk about scaling-up a recipe!), each accompanied by a recipe poster that listed the ingredients.