Neptune bartender tells court how Nicole’s drinks were prepared

Monday, June 27, 2006
Witness: Roger Sanidad, Neptune Club bartender

Neptune Club bartender Roger Sanidad took the stand today to further prove that Nicole was too drunk the night of Nov. 1 to have consented to sex.

During direct examination with prosecution lawyer Honorato Aquino, Sanidad told the court how Neptune bar prepares the five drinks that Nicole had drank that night, and what their ingredients and corresponding alcohol contents are.

B-52, he said, was named after a bomber. Unlike the rest of the drinks that Nicole drank, he said it is a layered drink, which makes it longer—a minute in his estimate—to prepare. A third of the glass is first filled with Kalua, a coffee liquer, the next third with Bailey’s, a whiskey with cream, and the remaining third with Grand Marnier, an orange-flavored cognac, using a one-ounce shot glass.

He also said they have drinks called B-51 and B-53. The latter is a mixture of Kalua, Bailey’s and Vodka.

Vodka Sprite, on the other hand, is one composed of a shot of vodka and three shots Sprite served in an eight-ounce glass. He said they use a 25-ml jigger to measure each shot and a 50-ml jigger for double shots. He added that it takes them only five seconds to prepare Vodka Sprite if there is no other order.

The third drink, Singaporean Sling, is one shot gin, ½ shot lemon juice, three shots soda water, and cherry brandy. All the ingredients are mixed in a 10-ounce glass, stirred, topped with ice, and served with a straw. He also said the drink was invented in Singapore.

Long Island iced tea, he said, is 1/3 shot each of vodka, gin, tequila, white rum, and Triple Sec, and 1/2 shot of lemon juice and three shots of Coke. He said it is called iced tea even if it isn’t really tea because of its color. Like the Singaporean Sling, it is served with ice and a straw in a 10-ounce glass.

The last, Bull Frog, is one shot vodka, one shot gin, two shots pineapple juice, two shots Sprite, and one shot lime juice. It is served in a 10-ounce glass with ice and a straw.

Sometimes, however, he said it may also be served in a stainless pitcher, or in a plastic one if the bar runs out of stainless pitchers.

Sanidad showed a sample of this pitcher to the court, as well as samples of the eight-ounce and 10-ounce glasses, the jiggers, and the menu. He said a pitcher of Bull Frog is roughly equivalent to six glasses. Nicole’s stepsister Anna Liza Franco had told the court on June 23 that the former drank half a pitcher of Bull Frog the night of Nov. 1.

Sanidad said they use Gilbey’s gin, which has 40% alcohol content, Sky Vodka (40%), Jose Cuervo tequila (38%), Bacardi rum (40%), Walsh Triple Sec (39%), Walsh cherry-flavored brandy, Island Lime, and Del Monte pineapple juice.

He said Bailey’s has 17% alcohol content and Grand Marnier has 40%. He could not remember the alcohol content of Kalua but said it is considerably lower than that of the previous two.

During cross examination, Sanidad said B-52 is usually ordered by men, Long Island iced tea and Singaporean Sling by women, and Bull Frog by both men and women.

Asked by the defense lawyers about the quantity of ice added to the drinks, Sanidad said the ice cubes they use are small, about an inch each. They put a scoop of ice in Vodka Sprite, Singaporean Sling, Long Island iced tea, and Bull Frog, but don’t put any in B-52 because it is a layered drink. One scoop of ice, he said, has roughly five to 10 cubes.

The defense measured the level of the drinks against the ice, the glasses, and the pitcher. They had bottles of mineral water brought in, which they asked Sanidad to pour into the pitcher using the glasses to see if a pitcher was indeed equivalent to six 10-ounce glasses.

The six glasses filled the pitcher up to about three inches from the brim. Sanidad clarifed that for orders of pitchers of Bull Frog, they merely multiply the ingredients by six and mix these in the pitcher; they do not have to fix six glasses and pour these into the pitcher. Thus, the six glasses-per-pitcher figure that he gave was only an estimate.

Asked up to what level they fill the glasses with drinks, he said that, for Vodka Sprite, they fill the four-inch glass up to 2/3 with the ingredients, which Atty. Jose Justiniano, counsel for Lance Cpl. Keith Silkwood, measured to be three inches (inside measurements). They add the ice after all the ingredients have been mixed.

The defense also asked Sanidad if he saw Nicole that night; he answered that the bar was crowded and that there were three bartenders on duty. He said he couldn’t be sure if it was he who had prepared Nicole’s drinks.

He said waitresses in Neptune get the orders from the customers, who then prepare order slips, which they hand over to the bartenders. Only those who are sitting by the bar need not have such slips because they pay immediately.

When asked by Enrico Uyehara, lawyer of Lance Cpl. Dominic Duplantis, about his training as a bartender to test his credibility, he answered that he was trained by the head bartender at Subic Hardrock, where he worked before moving to Neptune.

The victim’s stepsister Anna Liza Franco then took the stand for the third time to continue her cross examination. She clarified that it was not Nicole who invited the group to go to Neptune on the nights of Oct. 30 and Nov 1, but Carlos Ocasio, another family friend, and Mills, respectively.

Franco also told Atty. Francisco Rodrigo, counsel for Lance Cpl. Chad Carpienter, that she and Nicole had no idea that there were several Americans in Neptune that night.

She said that she saw her sister dance with only one American, and that she looked happy but was not laughing. She said Nicole danced for a long time but was not dirty dancing.

She also said Nicole drank from a plastic pitcher that Garcia, their friend Christopher Mills’s liberty buddy, had left on the table near theirs.

Rodrigo asked Franco why she didn’t think of leaving the place when they had began to feel dizzy after their first drink. She said she was at ease because their friend Mills was with them. She also disputed Rodrigo’s allegation that it was Mills’s intention to get them drunk.

She said that she did not walk “pasuray-suray” like Nicole because Mills gave her water and because she had urinated. She added that they had lunch on time that day because she remembered that they ate within the time allowance provided by the hotel where they were staying and where they were entitled to free meals.

Franco had testified at the hearing on June 23 that she and Nicole had only a slice each of Yellow Cab pizza at 6:30 that night, which the prosecution argues is relevant because drinking on an empty stomach increases a person’s susceptibility to intoxication.

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