Caterina Miltenberger, Founder, Caterina Creative Culinary, Dallas, Texas
An award-winning mixologist in Dallas, Caterina has 20-plus years’ experience in the beverage industry working with many groups in the U.S. Bartenders Guild and the International Bartenders Guild. Her talent for making drinks that are unique and delicious but also approachable for clients and their customers has led her to collaborate with celebrity chefs Mario Batali, Guy Fieri, Todd Erickson, Bobby Flay and Stephan Pyle, a founding father of Southwest cuisine.
Cat’s zeal began at a very early age. An East Dallasite, she grew up in the restaurant business and hospitality is in her blood. Her passion for entertaining, and her innate ability in combining spirits, essences, foods, and flavors comes from her first generation Sicilian-American heritage. She is affectionately known as “The Liquid Chef” to her close friends, co-workers, and clients.
“When it comes to making a drink, I think ‘Chanel’ perfection… simple and elegant is my style.”
Cat showcases Southwest-style drinks and helped popularize a jalapeño margarita that influenced many bars and restaurants. Her creations also won best margarita in Dallas three years in a row. Cat champions offbeat ingredients like honey, which she promotes via her membership in the Dallas Honey Guild.
Cat also belongs to the Dallas chapter of the esteemed Les Dames Escoffier. Her relationship with The Perfect Purée goes back more than a decade to a hotel in Dallas that used The Perfect Purée Passion Fruit Concentrate. She became an instant fan.
“The Perfect Purée is my go-to for presentations in the culinary world,” Caterina says.
Cat trained with Master Mixologist Jacques Bezuidenhout. She has created cocktails for local and national celebrities like Deion and Pilar Sanders. In August of 2010, noted in Quick Magazine: “Top Ten Cocktails you must try this summer” and November’s issue of Tasting Panel Magazine and featured mixologist for Tyku at Aspen Food & Wine 2010. Using The Perfect Purée Strawberry Puree and balsamic vinegar, Cat created the signature cocktail for Napa Valley’s Far Niente Winery’s 125th anniversary (featuring Dolce Liquid Gold from Napa Valley).
At the 2011 Wine & Spirits Wholesalers Association convention, Cat won best dessert drink with The Perfect Purée Mango Puree and at the same event in 2015 earned best long drink with The Perfect Purée Prickly Pear Puree. When The Perfect Purée released Cranberry as a seasonal limited-edition flavor, Cat created a fall/winter frozen margarita for a Dallas-based national Tex-Mex chain. The margarita flew out the door of restaurants taking all the Cranberry Puree with it.
“As a result, I believe Cranberry was put on permanent offering by The Perfect Purée,” she says.
Cat was a celebrity judge at the Los Angeles International Spirits Competition in 2013, 2016, and 2017. She’s presented the Toast to Congress in Washington, D.C. and has many of her cocktails published in the Neiman Marcus Cookbook. Other publications that have featured her recipes include The Tasting Panel Magazine, Cosmopolitan, Cheers, Chilled, FD Luxe Magazine, and D Magazine.