Vote for HAL’s Bartenders in the Bacardi Cruise Competition

Shaken or stirred? Frozen or on the rocks? With hundreds of different concoctions and endless cocktail possibilities, Holland America Line prides itself on having the most talented bartenders to keep our thirsty guests happy.

The talent of our bartenders has been validated with the nomination of FIVE of our mixologists for the title of Bartender of the Year in the ninth annual Bacardi Cruise Competition. There are only 25 semi-finalists from cruise and ferry lines around the world, so it’s a true testament to their abilities that Holland America Line represents one-fifth of the overall nominees!

The 25 semi-finalists got to this stage by developing travel-inspired signature cocktails that showcase their skills and creativity using Bacardi’s family of brands.

This year, Bacardi is asking fans to help select one of the finalists. Five will be chosen by a judging panel, and Cruise Critic readers have the chance to vote for the sixth and final drink/bartender to move on to the finals in September.

Between until July 16 you can vote for your favorite drink recipe created by the 25 semi-finalist bartenders and receive the free Bacardi Cruise Competition recipe guide. Return daily to vote and check back on July 25 when the six finalists are announced.

The five Holland America Line bartenders and their recipes are:

Redel's Jade Sling.

Redel’s Jade Sling.

Redel Bunda
ms Amsterdam
Jade Sling

Inspiration: This was created to inspire the lovers of Jade. The color of this cocktail brings to life the essence of Jade.

1.5 parts Grey Goose Le Citron
0.5 parts Amaretto
1.5 parts fresh orange juice
0.5 parts house made sour
1 lemon wedge
1 thin slice of fresh ginger

Muddle lemon wedge and fresh ginger.
Shake all ingredients and pour into pint glass.
Garnish with slice of ginger and orange slice.

Alejandro's J'dore.

Alejandro’s J’adore.

Alejandro Caballero, Jr.
ms Prinsendam

Inspiration: J’adore is a French phrase that means I adore you. I’ve travelled to France many times and find it enchanting. The scenery, the architecture, sights and smells make it a place that stands out in my mind. That, coupled with my love and devotion to my wife and daughter whom I dream of sharing France with one day, has inspired me to create this cocktail. Using premium French vodka such as Grey Goose only suits this concoction.

1.5 parts Grey Goose Le Citron
1 part Domaine de Canton
0.5 parts fresh lemon juice
0.5 parts simple syrup
lemongrass for garnish

Combine all ingredients in a shaker filled with ice.
Shake well for 10 seconds and strain into a chilled martini glass.
Garnish with a straw of lemongrass.

Jose and his Charmed drink.

Jose and his Charmed drink.

Jose Mercado
ms Veendam

Inspiration: This cocktail is based on my favorite TV show “Charmed.” When I’m working on board, this show helps me relax when I have free time.

1.5 parts Bacardi Razz
0.5 parts St-Germain
1 part house-made sour
1 part soda water
2 slices of jalapeno
2 orange wedges
handful mint sprigs

In a shaker muddle the orange and jalapeno pepper.
Add a handful of mint sprigs and fill with ice.
Add Bacardi Razz, St-Germain, the house-made sour and soda water and shake for 5 seconds.
Pour into a poco grande glass and garnish with mint sprigs.

Henry and the Pacific Rim.

Henry and the Pacific Rim.

Henry Nuqui
ms Veendam
Pacific Rim

Inspiration: I got the name from the movie and then thought why not make a cocktail out of it as the Pacific Rim is a very mysterious and powerful place.

1.5 parts Grey Goose L’Orange
0.5 parts St-Germain
1.5 parts fresh pineapple juice
1 part soda water
2 freshly squeezed limes

In a shaker, muddle limes.
Add all ingredients and fill with ice.
Shake and pour in a pint glass with a full sugar rim.
Garnish with pineapple and cherry on a pick.

Bailon and the Dark and Cloudy cocktail.

Bailon and the Dark and Cloudy cocktail.

Bailon Pasamba
ms Noordam
Dark & Cloudy

Inspiration: When the typhoon hit the Philippines it was so dark and cloudy. It’s a vision that stands out in my mind, so I named this drink after that experience.

1.5 parts Bacardi Razz
0.5 parts Chambord
2 parts pomegranate juice
2 parts cranberry juice
1 part soda water

Combine all ingredients in a shaker filled with ice.
Shake and pour into a pint glass.
Garnish with a raspberry on a pick.

Click HERE to vote for one of Holland America Line’s fantastic bartenders! Which drink would you like to try?


Join the Discussion


  1. Andrew Yeaman July 9, 2014 at 3:48 pm - Reply

    After 15 cruises, Holland America bartenders are the best on the high seas

  2. Clive Mynott July 10, 2014 at 11:28 pm - Reply

    Judith on the Zandam, highly professional, with great energy and personality, friendly warn and sincere and just so so very happy.
    She Rocks and wins hands down

    Cheers Clive Mynott

  3. Janelle Dooley February 12, 2016 at 5:21 am - Reply

    Just wanted to thank the best bar staff ever for making our holiday great . So cheers to all of the guys on the MS Noordam in the Crow’s nest bar hi to Rex ,Gerald thanks for a wonderful time .

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