Kulak is Jameson Barrelmen’s Homecoming global champion

11 July, 2019

Ania Kulak from Norway was named global champion of the 'Jameson Barrelmen’s Homecoming' competition held in Cork, Ireland, last month, with her winning cocktails In The Green, High on Life and Goosebomb.

The global competition attracted 28 bartenders from 28 countries.

The finalists (top five) chose bartenders from other countries to help them to create a cocktail menu using the theme ‘from farm to glass’. Teams used the gardens at Ballymaloe House, the venue for the final, to forage for ingredients and garnishes.

The Jameson Barrelmen’s Homecoming was set over four days (June 23-26 ) and included three competition heats; the speed heat and two ‘from farm to glass’ cocktail heats, tours of the distillery, workshops, tastings and Jameson Fest.

Kulak’s winning cocktail recipes comprised:

- In the Green; 60ml Jameson Black Barrel, 15ml chocolate mint syrup, three dashes homemade Jameson Black Barrel bitters (with star anise, clove, and wormwood), garnish: chocolate mint leaf.

- High on Life; 50ml Jameson IPA, 30ml rhubarb juice, 15ml pineapple weed syrup, two dashes Jameson Wild Seaweed Bitters, garnish: pineapple weed sprig.

- Goosebomb!; 60ml Jameson Original, 45ml strawberry syrup, 10ml gooseberry syrup, top: Gooseberry foam, garnish: forget-me-not flower.

Kulak told the crowd: “Since I entered this competition, I realised it is all about the collaboration, meeting people and exchanging ideas, the personalities and the experience.

"This menu wouldn’t exist today if not for my team. Give a big shout out to Tiger from China and Markus from Sweden. Since we had to collaborate, we really wanted to make a drink altogether but each of the drinks are inspired by our cultures. The first drink is inspired by Chinese flavours, then Norwegian and Swedish.”

The final judging panel included Billy Leighton, master blender at Irish Distillers, Andre Duncan, Jameson Barrelmen’s Homecoming global champion 2018, Will Meredith, head bartender at Lyaness, London and Angel Ji, award-winning Malaysian bartender.

Kulak’s prize was a partnership with Jameson, with funding up to €20,000 for a project that will support her local community.

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