Billie Keithley, Liquid Chef, Breckenridge Distillery, Breckenridge, Colorado

Billie Keithley uses the term liquid chef to describe her thoughtful construction of drinks that often feature high-mountain ingredients from Breckenridge, CO. Her deep passion for hand-crafted cocktails exceeds the boundaries of creativity.

“If it’s edible, I can create a delectable cocktail with it,” says Billie, the liquid chef at Breckenridge Distillery.

Billie has spent more than 15 years bartending in Breckenridge, including eight years at Breckenridge Distillery, where she also acts as a brand ambassador teaching people about its products. In that time, she’s accumulated a lot of knowledge about mixing with barrel-aged spirits and pairing spirits with innovative flavors. Billie is among the new generation of influential young bartenders using The Perfect Purée to stretch her imagination.

“The blends and the single-ingredient purées are super-fresh and fun to experiment with and the shelf life is great for two years if kept frozen,” she says.

Billie’s drink menu reads like a culinary travelogue of Colorado. Spiced whiskey distilled on-site, mountain honey, allspice berries, cinnamon and cider go into the menu’s generous number of warming drams and mules. After a sunny day on the slopes, a Cucumber Bow Thai is a refreshing “porch pounder” with pear vodka, cucumber, ginger and Thai basil.

The world’s highest distillery uses Rocky Mountain snowmelt for mineral-infused spirits that consistently earn national acclaim including New York International Spirits Competition Distillery of the Year in 2013 and 2015 and Icons of Whiskey Brand Innovator Award in 2018. Breckenridge Distillery Founder and CEO Bryan Nolt emphasizes the simple pleasures of quality, mouthfeel and flavor and incorporates ingredients like Colorado western slope fruits and botanicals as much as possible.