travel & lifestyle blog by ruth dela cruz

I have a Toma Degree from GSM Blue-niversity

June 28, 2011

When I say I have tasted almost all kinds of alcohol – from beers, spirits and wines, I am not exaggerating. Bar Management was my favorite subject in College because it was the most relaxed and fun class. It is the only subject in school that drinking was allowed.

I am, however, not very fond of drinking alcohol. I never like its taste and aftertaste. Let’s say, I can only drink certain alcohol drinks and alcohol-based drinks (I am actually loving wines now). I only get to enjoy alcohol if I am with a company of friends, but I am not the type who looks for it, or craves for it. Usually, after class, it was the boys who would took (and consume) all the alcohol bottles. It was the biggest time of their life.

Our midterms and finals were not the ordinary written test. Aside from the written exam, we even had practical tests. During our midterms, we were asked to memorize the 25 international cocktail drinks (from the type of glass used to garnitures). One by one, we were asked to pick a card with the name of the cocktail drink ( I think I have gotten Black Russian), then we must pick all the ingredients/alcohols from the bar and mix/prepare it infront of the class (with other students watching you from outside). Pouring alcohol, shaking the shaker, and coming up with the correct drink  were not just the criteria for getting a good score – you must perform and throw the bottles. This was when I learned how to bottle flair and yes, I can throw a bottle and make it stand in my hand.

The finals was even more challenging, aside from bottle flairing, we were asked to come up with our very own drink. I remember my drink was named, Silent Scream. I cannot even remember the song I used during my turn, I think it was Im too sexy, or Trouble With Boys (?)

So my professor was very proud in saying that our university was one of the few universities who did such practical exams for Bar Management. We were lucky, but HRM students are luckier now. They can learn more about cocktail mixing and bottle-flairing through GSM Blue-niversity.

Welcome Class!

In Capones bar in Makati, I once again felt being a student as masters of GSM Blue-niversity introduced us the drinks of San Miguel, taught us the basics of cocktail mixing, and impressed us with flairing skills.

The event was not just an overflow of drinks, but also contests and trivia.

I learned that Martini is the most popular drink in the world (the most ordered – and I thought it was Margarita – probably just for ladies!).


 Everyone knows a cocktail is a mixed drink with base drink (usually gin, vodka, tequila) and/or juice, and other complimentary drinks like Blue Curaccao, Grenadine Syrup, Creme de Menthe. The cocktail should taste more like an alcohol. If it tastes more like a juice, it is then called a Punch! (I learned something new!).

GSM Blue goes well with any drinks like juices and it can also be enjoyed as is – with ice.

Official Drink for Puerto Princesa

GSM Blue even concocted special drinks for cities and provinces’ events.

The GSM Blue-niversity aims to teach students (Hotel and Restaurant Management Students) on how to mix drinks, do bottle-flairing and promote responsible drinking. The Flair-Idol (inspired by American Idol) is an annual event wherein top of top flair contenders compete for the title. I remember years ago, it was only the T.G.I.Fridays which conducts this type of competition for its bartenders.

Honestly, if salary is not a concern, I would want to be a bartender in the local bar – serving drinks, throwing some bottles and chatting with customers.

Three bloggers were asked to make their own drink using GSM Blue and the judges had a hard time deciding who to announce the winner. Since it was a happy night, all of them were announced as winners!

Congratulations! The one in a middle is of legal age alright!

After the event, mommy Lariza was awarded the Toma-Cum-Laude. If only I was required to to go work after the event, I would have joined the contest. 😉

The Toma-Cum Laude

 Anyway, we were all awarded with certificate and a package to bring home so we could also be Flair Idols.

One bottle of GSM Blue I gave to my boss

Thank you GSM Blue and Perlas&Luna for the invite! *hic I also have to say, Happy Birthday to Alex (he celebrated his birthday with all the blogger toma-students that night!).

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