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The council has now finalized our award ceremony breakdown that will be given at out at our annual holiday party. These awards were originally discussed with last years council but we ran out of time during planning to put them into action…this year we are excited to make it happen.

These awards were very carefully determined and named after the Founding Fathers of the chapter. The Las Vegas chapter is one of the longest running chapters in the history of the USBG. It stems back over 20 years ago when there were only two in the whole country. These gentleman were some of the few that had a vision, carried it out and still to this day continue to be extremely involved in the growth and development of our guild. This is our way of saying thank you for that dedication!

Only 4 awards will be given at our holiday party and they will be really tough to get. You as the members will nominate your peers, I will announce the nomination period sometime at the end of October. The council will take the nominations and along with the coinciding Founding Father, we will decide who will receive the awards. Below is the breakdown! Start thinking about who deserves these awards and paying attention to your fellow members!! May the most deserving win!

  • (Tony Abou-Ganim) TAG Paragon Award: A member that showcases the core values of the founding members. A role model and mentor. The overall perfect example of hospitality. A member that takes immense pride in the craft of Bartending and is an invaluable asset to the Las Vegas USBG.
  • Livio Lauro Award: A member that strives to strengthen their craft through continuous education and academic advancement.
  • Bobby G New Kid on the Block Award: A new member that has made great strides to become a more well rounded bartender through education, seminars, competitions and events.
  • The Lafranconi Creativity Award: A member that exemplifies the most creativity in cocktail design for their cocktails, for menus or competition. A member that goes against the grain and raises the bar for cocktail creation.


It was great to see familiar faces as well as many new members at the June roundtable. We had amazing cocktails featuring Bacardi spirits and hospitality and appetizers from Whist Stove & Spirits. Bacardi even raffled off some great books/bottles and a guitar! We hope to see everyone at the July roundtable, there is something really awesome planned!


DATE: 6/2/15
TIME: Noon-3pm
LOCATION: Whist Stove & Spirits
HOST: Bacardi
DONATIONS COLLECTED: $187 and 5 new toys

  • Kristen leads this roundtable by informing the members that from now on we will be using Neat tasting glasses for all sprit tastings. She explained to the members how to use this glass. More information can be found at
  • It was also stated that new members and members that renew their membership will now receive a USBGLV engraved Neat glass as a gift.
  • We then discussed with members the upcoming competitions. Don Q Pina Colada Challenge, Bols Best Bartender, Rhum Clement Ti Punch, Bombay Sapphire Most Imaginative Bartender, HEXX Cocktail competition. A detailed email will soon be sent to members with all the information needed to enter effectively.
  • Kristen informed the members that we are working on shirts and Raul also mentioned that shirts and memorabilia are now available on the USBGLV website at Kristen also mentioned to members about pants that are bartender specific that we are endorsing. There will be a discount code provided to members soon. In the meantime please visit com to take a look.
  • Kristen made the announcement that Caio Fuganholi will be appointed the first USBGLV Ambassador! This position was created to help with recruiting new members, reactivating expired members and encouraging less active members to participate in events and competitions.

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On May 19th, The USBGLV took a day trip to Fallon, NV (about an hour outside of Reno) to visit the Frey Ranch Estate Distillery.

We met up with members of the Reno chapter and began the tour! Frey Ranch is very unique in that everything that is made is from the grains and grapes on property. The tour began with a look into the Churchill Vineyards and what varietals they are growing. Everything from Pinot Noir to Semillon. They are experimenting with what grows best and may take awhile before they are 100% ready to have a steady stream of quality wines. They also make a pretty damn good Brady as well.

We took a break for lunch and then went on the distillery tour. Colby Frey and company are making almost anything and everything here. There is a lot of experimenting being done. Their flagship spirit it definitely the Vodka. It is a very creamy, full flavored and full mouth feel vodka. They have Bourbon in barrel that won’t be ready for bottles for another 4-6 years. We had a chance to taste the white dog off the still and a 4 month aged Bourbon and both showed amazing potential. We look forward to coming back in a few years and see how it’s maturing. The newest addition, still in progress, will be the Gin. They are going for a very delicate, citrus, floral Gin from the taste of the nominees for the final product. Keep a lookout for it soon!

We were in for a real treat when Francesco Lafranconi used Frey Ranch spirits and made a few amazing cocktails to show how to utilize them to their full potential in a mixology scenario. All in all, this was an amazing day with great friends and an amazing Distillery. We will be back very soon!


Checking out the fermentation tanks. This was a Bourbon mash (beer) waiting to distill.




We had an opportunity to fill our own Bourbon barrel! See you in 5 years! (at least)



What an amazing tasting room!





Churchill Vineyards




Very unique still setup. It is a hybrid ready to take on any spirit configuration.

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We spent the day donating time to a great local charity, Toys 4 Smiles. They take in donated wood and supplies and make high quality, hand-made toys. These toys are then donated to anyone in need of a smile. They are sent to children’s hospitals, shelters, schools, churches and many more. You don’t need any prior woodworking skills to help out and they are always in need of volunteers. I encourage you to spend some time with this great charity. Click here for more information on how to volunteer.



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We had an amazing turnout for our very first USBGLV AIDS walk team. We raised over $3,000 for AFAN! Big thank you to our team sponsors Disaronno, Absolut, Herbs & Rye and Elyx for donating $2000 to the cause and putting up some fantastic prizes for the winners.

Lets also take a second to recognize the members who walked that day and raised over $1,000, Juyoung Kang, Tim Weigel, Nick Sanchez, Wan Requena, Caio Fuganholi, Ramon Ordonez, Raul Faria, Adam O’Donnell, Matt Graham, SeongHa Lee, Keith Baker, Arturo Marquez, Bill Janisse, Cody Fredrickson, Te Anne Lakeotes and Keely Bond. We also had donations from Tony Abou Ganim and Joy Herrin.

Stay tuned to find out who the winners are of the fundraising contest!

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