Miranda Paulsen has enjoyed attending the Carolina Country Music Festival in Myrtle Beach during the event’s four year residency on the Grand Strand.
Now, her signature drink skills are making a splash at CCMF and earned Paulsen a ticket to the party.
Paulsen, who is the new owner of Beer 30 in Surfside Beach, won first place in George Dickel Tennessee Whisky and Carolina Country Music Festival’s Bartender Challenge signature cocktail contest. The bar’s liquor representative brought the contest to her attention.
“I think there were a total of 30-32 entries from local bars and restaurants,” Paulsen said.
Paulsen’s cocktail made it through several rounds of judging. Patrons voted on Facebook for the “People’s Choice” after coming into the bar to try the signature drink.
“We won first place in that only by two points,” Paulsen said.
The top four drinks were sampled by a veteran judge, who came into each restaurant with a group of friends to try the drinks.
“We won that round by one point,” the bar owner said.
Prior to the contest, only Paulsen’s bartenders sampled the drink.
The cocktail, called the Dickel Tootsie, will be on the Beer 30 menu year round.
“We’ve probably served at least 100 of the drinks,” Paulsen said. “I actually made whiskey taste like a Tootsie Roll.”
Paulsen’s drink name and flavor were inspired by her past experiences attending CCMF.
“During judging, I was asked what made me want to make that drink,” she said. “I told them that after being to CCMF for many years, I’ve never left not tootsied.”
The Dickel Tootsie recipe will be revealed at CCMF, but you’ll have to stop by Beer 30 to try it for yourself.
For winning the Bartender Challenge, Paulsen received two VIP tickets to the festival. Stop by the George Dickel Tennessee Whisky tent to meet her and learn more about the cocktail.
“I’ll be hanging out at the Dickel tent pushing the promotion,” she said.
If you can’t make it to CCMF, come see Paulsen at Beer 30, a local favorite that is near and dear to the owner.
“I’ve worked here on and off for the past 11 years. I fell in love with the clientele around here,” she said. “I just took over in September. It was about to change hands, and I didn’t want it to change drastically.”
Beer 30 features live music every Friday night. Happy hour is from 4-8 p.m. Monday through Friday with domestics for $2 and well drinks for $3.
Under Paulsen’s leadership, the bar has opened up its kitchen with a small menu of quality eats.
“We have really good food,” the owner said. “We have awesome burgers and wings.”
Beer 30 is at 810 U.S. 17 Business, Suite 2, in Surfside Beach. For more information, call 843-232-7273 or visit them on Facebook under “The Original Beer 30 Bar & Grill.”