From June 8-13 fourteen of the world’s most creative bartenders will congregate in London for the internationally recognised Global Final of its World’s Most Imaginative Bartender competition. Since the inaugural competition in 2011, the program has witnessed exponential growth in popularity, with the 2014 Global Final seeing bartenders from 14 countries worldwide come together in a showcase of skill, creativity and imaginative story telling.
Finalists for the 2014 Bombay Sapphire World’s Most Imaginative Bartender competition are:
- Kenny Klein representing Austria, from Maniac Bar Artists, Bad Ischl
- Lee Peppinck representing Canada, from The Living Room, Calgary
- Jonas Brandenborg Andersen representing Denmark, from Strom bar, Copenhagen
- Richard Wood representing the UK, from Duck & Waffle, London
- Marian Krause representing Germany, from Spirits Bar, Köln
- Alexander Frezze representing Italy, from Achivio Storico, Napoli
- Ayumi Tokunaga representing Japan, from Bar Seven Seas, Fukuoka
- Ran van Ongevalle representing Belgium, from BAAR, Ghent
- Juan Valls representing Spain, from El Nino Perdido, Valladolid
- Timothy Alun Mulhbeyer representing Switzerland, from Hotel Schweizer Hof, Bern
- Julio Cabrera representing the USA, from The Regent Cocktail Club, Miami
- Remy Savage representing France, from Little Red Door, Paris
- David Mora representing Mexico, from Puebla 109, La Roma
- Zoe Waage representing Norway, from Bettola, Oslo
Offering inspirational and unique experiences in a five day imaginative dual-location trip, competitors will initially be treated to an exclusive preview tour of the Bombay Sapphire distillery at Laverstoke Mill in Hampshire before being immersed in the culture, history and fine-drinking circuit of London. They will be challenged to create a new gin based cocktail that combines individual influence and creativity, with the cultural experiences discovered during the VIP trip.
Raj Nagra, Global Brand Ambassador for Bombay Sapphire, says, “The World’s Most Imaginative Bartender competition is a true celebration of the importance of creativity and ingenuity in mixology and we are thrilled to be hosting such a high calibre of talent in this year’s Global Final. Bartending is so much more than being a great showman, each cocktail needs a well thought out story, the perfect balance of flavour, supreme bartending skills and unparalled originality.”
The first round of the competition will be a day of Semi-Finals, with each competitor battling to secure a place in the coveted Grande Final. But to make it this far, each competitor has already triumphed over hundreds of other applicants in a series of duelling local heats at regional and national levels.
Matteo Vanzi, the Bombay Sapphire2013 winner, knows all too well about the dedication and hunger needed to win the coveted title of World’s Most Imaginative Bartender. He says, “Competitors will really start to feel the spotlight shining on them, and will need to dig deep to find the creativity and imagination needed to take this year’s title. I’ve had a whirlwind year since winning 2013, which has seen me move to London to work in one of the city’s best bars and had my own cocktail – Red Carpet – become the signature serve in Virgin Atlantic’s Clubhouses* for the year.”
The collaboration with Virgin Atlantic is being continued for a second year as part of the exciting prize package on offer to the 2014 Global Winner. This partnership opportunity, in addition to holding the coveted title of Bombay Sapphire World’s Most Imaginative Bartender and being etched into the Hall of Fame at the distillery, is part of a bigger prize fund to be awarded to the winner. At the heart of this is attendance alongside Bombay SapphireGlobal Brand Ambassador Raj Nagra at some of the world’s premium trade shows and significant media profiling.
Bombay Sapphire hopes the 2014 Global Final will not only sparkthe imagination of bartenders from across the globe, but consumers as well. For the first time in the competitions history, consumers will be invited to sample each finalist’s cocktail creation, and vote for their choice of bartender to steal The People’s Choice Award on the night.
And Gintime will be there as Editor Geraldine Coates has been asked to judge the semi-final stage of the Competition – yay!
For more information on the Bombay Sapphire World’s Most Imaginative Bartender competition, visit www.bombaysapphire.com/imaginativebartender. You can also follow the competitors’ journey through Twitter at @BombaySapphire or join in the conversation using #MostImaginativeBartender