FEATURING THE BAR TEAM AT LOUNGE 5280 at DENVER INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT

Travelers, take note! 


Whenever the Montanya team travels, we stop off at Lounge 5280 at the Denver International Airport (DIA). It’s in the B Main Concourse, on the Mezzanine level, and it’s one of our favorite places to grab a cocktail and snack before taking off. It has a stylish and upscale bar with a contemporary edge, and offers premium and unique cocktails. It also features Montanya rum on its regular menu along with a full menu of artisan cocktails made with Colorado craft spirits.

This month, in our Montanya Bartender Series, we’re highlighting five bartenders from Lounge 5280 in Denver. They share favorite cocktail recipes, surprising insights on clientele and what it’s like working at an airport bar!

**As we highlight bartenders we have come to love, we’d also like to hear from you. If you know about a bartender who makes innovative cocktails with Montanya rum, we’d love to consider them for a future post. To see past installments from the Montanya Mixology Series visit The Kitchen Denver or Justice Snow’s.**

Becca Dummar
Bartender at Lounge 5280

Years of Bartending Experience:
5 years at Lounge 5280 – 15 years in service industry

What’s unique about your clientele?

Even though we’re in an airport, more than 40 percent of our clientele are regular patrons. The most gratifying detail is that people schedule their flights around an opportunity to come up to 5280 for a cocktail crafted with local Colorado spirits, a glass of wine, or one of Colorado’s craft beers. Customers can accompany their libation with our assortment of provisions; including fresh shrimp cocktail, roasted beet salad, marinated olives, ahi tuna and our seasonal flatbreads. 

Is working in an airport setting organized chaos every day?

Yes, but it provides a fantastic opportunity to connect with people and learn what makes them tick, where their jobs might take them, or what fantastic vacation they are jetting off to. I think the most entertaining part of the day is the thrilling travel stories we hear.

What is your favorite thing about working with Colorado craft spirits?
It is wonderful to have an opportunity to meet local distillers face-to-face or see them in action, which creates an unparalleled connection. The passion behind the product demonstrates the quality and creates excitement for new customers trying local spirits. It’s a great conversation piece for our customers.  

Why do you use Montanya Rum in your bar program?
Karen Hoskin at Montanay has been an inspiration to me over the years. She is doing what she loves and she exemplifies a model businesswoman with ambition. She shows me that you can have a career and still be a wonderful mother! The balance of work and home is something that can be challenging, but gratifying.

What sets your bar program apart from others?
Offering Colorado spirits & cocktails to the everyday traveler has so many rewards and being able to expose customers to our Colorado proud spirits is very fulfilling. At Lounge 5280, we have to compete and offer quality options to a captive audience, so focusing on a high level of customer service and quality has been our goal since day one.

Recently Featured Montanya Cocktail at Lounge 5280
Bright and Sunny in Colorado
2 ounces of Montanya Platino
2 ounces of fresh squeezed orange juice
Top with ginger beer

{Is this the right way to write this description?}
Muddle fresh mint.
Add Platino rum and orange juice and shake.
Serve over ice and top with ginger beer.

Recently Featured Montanya Cocktail at Lounge 5280
Raspberry Rum Smash
2 ounces of Montanya Platino
1 ounce of fresh squeezed lime juice
Top with Pellegrino

Muddle fresh raspberries and mint.
Add Platino rum and lime juice and shake.
Serve over ice and top with Pellegrino.
Garnish with fresh mint and orange. 

Jony Castorena
Bartender at Lounge 5280

Years of Bartending Experience:
4 years

What do you like the most about working with Colorado craft spirits?
It makes for great conversations and good experiences for people from all over the country, who try our Colorado craft spirits. It’s great being able to educate and show off, to our customers, what great tasting spirits we have in Colorado.

What is your favorite rum cocktail? 

A traditional mojito, with silver rum, turbinado simple syrup and fresh squeezed lime juice.

Mojito

Collins Glass with ice
1/2 Turbinado Sugar rim
1 Squeezed Lime
2.5 oz Platino
.25 Simple Syrup
6-8 Mint leaves - muddled
top with soda

Tyler Striplin-Sullivan
Bartender at Lounge 5280

Years of Bartending Experience:
3 years as a bartender 

What do you like about Lounge 5280?
I have been at Lounge 5280 for close to a year and have been learning a ton about craft cocktails, as Classic Mojito (also shown with a Blackberry option)well as craft beer. I started bartending in Los Angeles and learned about craft cocktails there, but what I like about Lounge 5280 is we use fresh and locally-sourced ingredients, as well as local spirits and beer. 

What is your favorite rum cocktail?
Piña Colada because it's a classic and most people I've found either don't make it correctly or just avoid it completely.

The classic recipe:
1/2 cup of crushed ice
2 ounces of Montanya Platino 
2 tablespoons each of coconut milk, pineapple juice, ice cream (vanilla)

Blend all the ingredients together and garnish with pineapple and cherry.

However, I personally don't like it blended and at Lounge 5280 I make it a little different.

My recipe:
2 ounces of Montanya Platino
1 ounce of almond syrup
1 ounce of pineapple juice
Splash of cranberry & hibiscus simple syrup

Shake all ingredients together, serve over ice, and garnish with a flag (cherry and an orange).

Jason Garin
Bartender at Lounge 5280

Years of Bartending Experience:
10 years as a bartender – 15 years in service industry

What do you like the most about working with Colorado craft spirits?
I was born and raised in Colorado so for me it's a sense of pride. By introducing people to something from my home state that someone else put their heart and soul into is a way for me to give back to Colorado and the people who give us these delicious sprits. 

What makes for a great night of bartending?
My idea of a great night of bartending would be a busy night where the whole team comes together and everything runs smoothly, you have great guests and just have a fun night. 

What do you wish more people knew about bartenders who develop craft cocktails?
To me, bartenders who develop craft cocktails seem to have more heart towards the cocktails they create and are more proud and excited to introduce people to these craft cocktails.

Laura Ramos
Bartender at Lounge 5280

Years of Bartending Experience:
4 years

What makes a great night of bartending?
Meeting the standards of my customers and helping them have a memorable experience. I love making cocktails from scratch and using fresh squeezed ingredients. More than half our cocktails are made with Colorado spirits as the main focus and it’s great being able to tell customers about the background of Colorado spirits.

 Lounge 5280 at Denver International Airport