Kenya’s Top 6 Bartenders vie for coveted title

It’s that time of year again where we celebrate our bartenders!

The 4th Kenyan Edition of World Class, one of the most respected competitions a bartender can enter, recently commenced and now we’re closer to knowing who will be crowned World Class Kenya Bartender of the Year and go on to represent the nation at the World Class Global Finals in Berlin, Germany.

A strong field of 34 bartenders from all over Kenya attended a special module called Signature Concepts, and then was tasked with creating a signature serve with a brand from the Diageo Reserve portfolio, which they randomly picked, and incorporated the five senses. The bartenders then competed at the World Class Studio Presentation, which was held on 17th and 18th of May, 2018.

PHOTO: World Class Kenya 2018 judges Susan Wong and Brian Owango

Judges Brian Owango, a pioneer of contemporary mixology in Kenya and CEO of Aqueous Mobile Bar, and Susan Wong, Editor of Capital Lifestyle and culinary journalist, were tasked with the difficult job of judging each competitor based on taste, touch, smell, sound, sight, technique and presentation. The competitors had five minutes to prepare, five minutes to present the drink to the judges, and five minutes to clear down the bar.

Six finalists emerged from the two-day session:

Kelvin Thairu – Radisson Blu
Angel Riviera – dusitD2 Nairobi
Patrick Mutual – Villa Rosa Kempinski
Evans Odhiambo – Villa Rosa Kempinski
Sam Nguyo – Mojito’s
Paramjeet Singh – Nyama Mama

The six finalists will now go on to a month-long Sales and Social Media Challenge, and the ultimate mixology show-down at the Kenyan National Finals later in June.

World Class Bartender of the Year competition brings together the best bartending talent from around to globe to decide who will be crowned the world’s best bartender. Since its launch in 2009, the competition has been instrumental in transforming fine drinking and cocktail culture around the world. This year, the Global Finals will be held in Berlin, Germany.

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