Diageo launches 10th World Class Bartender of the Year Competition

01 November, 2017

Diageo has launched its World Class Bartender of the Year Competition, kicking off with a nationwide roadshow.

Last year, Diageo Reserve introduced ‘World Class Roadshows’ – an “educational tour of Britain, aimed at providing bartenders with the skills and tools necessary to become a World Class bartender”. This year bartenders are invited to participate in a series of training sessions across the UK – World Class Studios.

The first of eleven World Class Studios which took place in west London last Monday (October 30), will be followed by sessions in Edinburgh, Leeds, Manchester, Liverpool, Birmingham, Cardiff, Bristol, Bournemouth, East London and Cambridge throughout November.

Hosted by the Diageo Reserve brand ambassador team, the studio sessions are designed to introduce attendees – from those at the beginning of their bartending careers to bartending veterans – to one of the world’s most prestigious bartending competitions, and to provide insight into how to enter the GB 2018 World Class Bartender of the Year Competition.

Diageo says the World Class Studios will focus on two key areas of interest that are prominent in today’s bartending world; The Resourceful Bartender is said to provide a deep understanding of how bartenders can become more sustainable within their work; and Heat of The Moment, examines an understanding of ingredients and techniques that chefs use when manipulating flavour and how these can translate into cocktail making.

Bartenders of all abilities that have been inspired by the roadshow will be able to enter the tenth annual World Class Competition from February 15. Entries close on: March 30.

The Diageo Reserve brand ambassadors will carry out in-bar judging of cocktail entries from April, 2–30,  before selecting the top 30 through to the semi-finals which will take place in London on May 29. The top 10 will then be put through to the final where they will battle it over two days of challenges, before the GB World Class 2018 Bartender of the Year is crowned on July 25.

The winner will receive a prize valued at £15,000 and will represent Great Britain in the World Class Global Finals in Berlin.

Head of Diageo Reserve World Class GB Dan Dove,said: “World Class is committed to showcasing the best bartenders in the industry. This year we’ve included the addition of the World Class Studios, which have been designed to provide attendees with guidance and support to take what they already know to the next level and prepare them for the 2018 competition. Sustainability and the power of flavour manipulation have become increasingly important for bartenders, which is why it was a no brainer to challenge the best in the business in these areas.”

Each World Class Studio will run from 2pm – 5pm. To book a place, bartenders should email: worldclass@sweetandchilli.com. Places are limited to 32 in each city and bookings are made on a first-come-first serve basis.

The World Class roadshow schedule:

October 30: Central London – Diageo HQ, 12 Golden Square, W1F 9JE

October 31: Edinburgh – 30a Chambers Street, Edinburgh, EH1 1HU

November 1: Leeds – 64-68 Call Lane, Leeds, LS1 6DT

November 2: Manchester – 90-94 Oxford Road, Manchester, M1 5WH

November 6: Liverpool – St Peters Square, Fleet Street, Liverpool, L1 4DQ

November 7: Birmingham – The Edgbaston Hotel, 18 Highfield Road, Edgbaston,

Birmingham B15 3DU

November 8: Cardiff – 9-11 Castle Street, Cardiff, CF10 1BS

November 9: Bristol – 5-7 Welsh Back, BS1 4SP

November 13: Bournemouth – 163-167 Old Christchurch Road, BH1 1JU

November:14: East London – 140-144 Leadenhall Street, London, EC3V 4QT

November 15: Cambridge – 3-6 Downing Street, Cambridge, CB2 3DS





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Joe Bates

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In Cannes last month as I dashed around from stand to stand and from interview to interview amid a whirl of product launches and cocktail parties, I heard one question asked over and over again.

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