BarMania, the WWE inspired, costume heavy, and generally outrageous, speed bartending competition is returning this fall—in Puerto Rico. The Puerto Rico offshoot will be co-hosted by Leslie Carlos Roberto’s team at San Juan’s celebrated La Factoria on November 5.
The brainchild of Herbs & Rye co-founder, Nectaly Mendoza, challenges competitors to make serve up seven cocktails, two shots and a beer. Fastest time wins (although costumes do get points also.)
Oh yeah, the entire point is too raise money to fight cancer. The events regularly reach five digit raises for charity.
Mendoza took some time to sit down with Neat Pour and answer some questions about the BarMania PR.
Why Puerto Rico?
I have had a profound love for Puerto Rico as a whole since I stepped foot open the island. It’s just an amazing, hospitable place with incredible people.
I also have an amazing relationship with Factoria. I have so much respect for what they have achieved. People tend to forget how easy we have it. We can get whatever we want, whenever we want, but they can’t—and they still made World’s Best 50 bars.
I had a conversation with [Roberto and the Factoria team] when they were launching Puerto Rico Cocktail Week. So, we decided to do BarMania during that event.
To top it off, ever since Day One of BarMania, we have had someone come out from Puerto Rico. The love that BarMania has had from them and the love from La Factoria has been incredible. They have been one of our biggest supporters. So, I though that it’s only right that we go out there.
How will Barmania PR be different?
Obviously Vegas is a different story. It’s easy for us to produce here because we’re home.
With Puerto Rico, we’re just really excited to going out there and putting on a great show and having it go well. This only our second event on the road.
Will the Golden Rooster, the coveted BarMania trophy, make it to Puerto Rico?
It has to. I think that’s the only thing that is going to fly first class out there.
You’re an avid sneakerhead. What will you be wearing in PR?
Oh man, I have the original sneakers made for Big Pun. Ewing Limited Edition made two types of Big Pun sneakers. Big Pun, the legendary Bronx rapper was very proud of his Puerto Rican heritage. Ewineg made one set with a Puerto Rican flag and one inspired by his Capital Punishment album.
I might wear one of those. Maybe a custom set. I’m taking a class on breaking down sneakers this fall so I can start making my own designs.
How do I get involved?
Basically, we’ll pick the competitors and then put up the online pages to donate money. At the end of the day, we’re doing this to fight childhood cancer. That’s important to remember.
There’s no profit. Herbs & Rye pays for all of the expenses. That’s our donation. So, every single dollar that walks in the door goes to this charity.
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