242 F St
In our October bartender feature, we talk with Kate Robertson of Moonlight Pizza in Salida, Colorado.
Some of the very original bars and restaurants that embraced Montanya Rums when we started nearly 10 years ago were in rural Colorado. These have been some of our most consistent and growing customers since the early days. While the big cities were still getting used to the idea of small craft distilleries back in 2008 and 2009, small venues in the mountains were saying a resounding "yes" to local products made with care. Moonlight Pizza was one of our early customers and has been a consistent purveyor of great cocktails. It is well worth building your ski, bike or kayaking vacation around a sunny afternoon on their patio in Salida.
Kate Robertson, Manager/Bartender Extraordinaire
How long have you been a bartender?
I have been bartending for about four years now. I started in college when I had just turned twenty-one and worked at a tavern that had forty-six beers on tap, and over twenty craft cocktails. I’ve been living in Salida and working at Moonlight Pizza and Brewpub for roughly three years now, and I enjoy the local atmosphere and all the staff and guests that come in.
How do you use Montanya Rum in your bar program?
We have a couple of ways we incorporate Montanya Rum in our bar program. We have an awesome homemade ginger beer that pairs really well with it to make a rum mule, and I like to add a splash of our homemade limeade as well to give it that spicy and tart flavor. One of my favorite ways we use Montanya is in what we call “The Executive.” It’s a pint of our house-brewed Moonlight Cream Ale (our ale version of an American-style lager) paired with a Colorado spirit of your choice; my personal favorite combination and the one I always suggest is Montanya rum and the Moonlight Cream Ale. Last, but certainly not least, is a local favorite, an “adult Float” - a tasty combination of our homemade root beer, two scoops of vanilla ice cream from the local ice creamery, and a shot of Montanya rum.
What makes for a great night of bartending?
I think the best night of bartending comes from having an awesome team and equally awesome guests...people who are really involved in the art of the service industry and what we do, and guests who appreciate our local flair and ask questions and get involved with both our cocktail experience and our brewery.
What sets your bar apart from all others?
There are several things that make our bar experience a very unique one; we don’t carry most traditional bar ingredients, we make all of our own homemade sodas in house (and we use them to create different cocktails). We also are a brewery, so all of our beers are made in house. One of the most unique things about our bar is that we only carry one of each kind of liquor - all of which are made in Colorado (with the exception of our tequila, of course!). This provides an interesting and exciting opportunity for Colorado distilleries, because when someone wants rum, the only product we carry for them is Montanya Rum, so they are the star of our show!