Chivas Regal Announces The First Chivas Master

The CHIVAS MASTERS 2014 New York

American bartender, Masahiro Urushido, has been revealed as Chivas Regal’s first ever Chivas Master, winning the iconic whisky brand’s inaugural bartender competition in style at the NoMad hotel in New York (15th July 2014).

Urushido was announced as the winner following a tightly-contested final which saw him impress an international panel of judges with his ‘The New Pal’ cocktail to secure victory over the 12 other international competitors. He wins the opportunity to work in partnership with Dave Arnold, inventor and co-founder of Booker and Dax, a food science development company and lab dedicated to finding solutions to real world food, beverage and cooking issues. The partnership will see Urushido and Arnold collaborating on an inspirational concept which will be revealed at the next Chivas Masters final in 2015.

The New Pal
The New Pal

The 13 finalists were all winners of the national Chivas Masters heats, which took place around the world following the competition’s launch in April this year. During the national heats, competitors were tasked with creating a new classic cocktail that would stand the test of time – just as Chivas does – inspired by one of the four great cocktail eras; the Classic Age (1880-1920) which saw the birth of Chivas Regal; the Post War Boom (1945-1965) during which time, Chivas 12 was introduced; the Disco Years (1975-1990) which saw the brand become a truly global icon, and the present modern Age of Revivalism.

During the two-day final, the bartenders were asked to re-create one of the cocktails that earned them a place in the final and also compete in a series of challenges designed to test their creativity, style and mixology skills. Highlights of these challenges included a milk-based cocktail pairing with Momofuku Milk Bar; a cocktail pairing with a dish from Momofuku Ssäm Bar, experimenting with carbonation with Dave Arnold; and presenting classic drinks at The Dead Rabbit.

The judging panel was comprised of leading experts in the world of food and drink, including Ago Perrone, Director of Mixology at the David Collins-designed Connaught Bar in London; Sean Muldoon and Jack McGarry from The Dead Rabbit in New York; and Max Warner, Chivas Global Brand Ambassador.

Dave Arnold praised the overall performance of the competitors during the final round commenting: “There were 13 talented bartenders for the judging panel to consider. These are professionals from some of the most iconic venues in the world so I would like to congratulate all of them for participating. The cocktails prepared by Masahiro were particularly impressive, and I look forward to working with him in the coming months.”

Masahiro Urushido commented: “It’s an honour to be chosen as the first Chivas Master. As a bartender, I am well aware of the long heritage of Chivas so immersing myself into the history of cocktails to create a drink that can stand the test of time has been very inspirational. I am excited to share this experience with my fellow bartenders and to introduce my ‘The New Pal’ cocktail to my customers in New York. I hope that it encourages other bartenders around the world to create new Chivas cocktails inspired by the great classics”.

Max Warner, Global Brand Ambassador for Chivas Regal, commented: “From Australia to Israel, Chile to China, there was talent from all over the world involved in the competition and we are very excited with the success of the inaugural Chivas Masters.

The global cocktail scene is seeing a growing interest in classic-inspired modern cocktails and, as a brand proud to be nurturing the bartending community, we look forward to continuing to inspire the on-trade to create great cocktails steeped in heritage, such as the one created by the very talented Masahiro Urushido.”

All competitors who took part in the final are now to conclude their trip with a visit to the world’s premier cocktail festival ‘Tales of the Cocktail’ in New Orleans, where Chivas is sponsoring the Best American/International Cocktail Bar at the Spirited Awards.

For more information visit: http://www.chivas.com

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Chivas Regal Gets Set To Select The First Chivas Master

Chivas Masters

On Tuesday 15 July 2014 in New York City, Chivas Regal, the world’s original luxury whisky, will announce the global winner of the inaugural Chivas Masters competition.
Launched earlier this year, the competition has seen the world’s best bartenders from 13 countries compete for the title, whilst in search of the next generation of classic cocktails. Throughout the competition competitors have been asked to craft a modern classic drink inspired by four great cocktail eras; the Classic Age (1880-1920) the Post War Boom (1945-1965), the Disco Years (1975-1990) and lastly the modern Age of Revivalism.

Over the course of the two-day final, a panel of industry experts will conduct a series of workshops and challenges to test the creativity, style and mixology skills of the competitors. Max Warner, Chivas Global Brand Ambassador will be joined by an esteemed panel of judges including Ago Perrone, Director of Mixology at the Connaught Bar in London to select the final Master. The judges will be assessing competitors on performance, knowledge of cocktail culture and creativity, and will be looking for a cocktail that can stand the test of time to become the next cocktail classic.

The winner of the Chivas Masters title will be announced at a cocktail evening at Nomad, New York, and will be presented with a grand prize on the night of 15th July. All competitors taking part in the competition will conclude their trip with a visit to the world’s premier cocktail festival ‘Tales of the Cocktail’ in New Orleans, where Chivas is sponsoring the Best American/International Cocktail Bar at the Spirited Awards.

For more information visit: http://www.chivas.com

Finalists include:

Alistair Reynolds, Hawksmoor Spitalfields London, UK
Chabiz Cadiz, Grand Hyatt Hotel, Santiago, Chile 
Cross Yu, The Epic, Shanghai, China 
Diogo Quinaz, Liquid Consulting, Cascais, Portugal 
Gilad Livnat, Imperial Craft Cocktail Bar, Tel Aviv, Israel 
Joe Villanueva, W Hotel, Hong Kong 
John Samaras, Dalliance House, Kifissia, Greece 
Laura Marnich, Zuma Restaurant, Dubai, UAE 
Marcus Philipp, The Albertina Passage, Vienna, Austria
Marian Krause, Spirits Bar, Cologne, Germany 
Masahiro Urushido, The Saxon and Parole, New York, USA 
Mitsuhiro Nakamura, The Peninsula, Tokyo, Japan 
Sam Egerton, Palmer & Co, Sydney, Australia

UKBG Cocktail Competition Seeks Fresh New Talent In London

London, home to some of the best bartenders in the world, is set to discover some bright new talent as the second heat of the UKBG National Cocktail Competition, sponsored by Wood’s 100 Old Navy Rum, heads to the Cocktail Capital.

The event, which will take place at the Red Bar, Grosvenor House, Park Lane on 24th June, will give the city’s bartenders a chance to show off their skills and have their recipe tasted by industry professionals in this iconic city.

Mixologists will battle it out to be crowned the best in their region whilst the crème de la crème of cocktail experts will judge their bespoke creations, and maybe even discover the next big thing. The winner will go through to the Final on 20th October for their chance to win and if successful; then to represent the UK in the 2015 IBA World Cocktail Championship in Bulgaria.

Contenders will be challenged to enter a recipe of a long drink, featuring a minimum of 35ml of Wood’s 100 Old Navy Rum and a maximum of five ingredients, that can be presented and served to four people within seven minutes.

Wood’s 100 Old Navy Rum is made from the finest Demerara sugar cane and is distilled in Guyana, South America. Bottled at 57% abv it is one of the highest strengths of dark rum on the market. With its smooth, sweet & mellow flavour, it’s the perfect choice for a cocktail!

The UKBG Cocktail Competition London heat will take place from 11am at the Red Bar, Grosvenor House, Park Lane, London. Entrants must be members of the UKBG to compete, with annual membership available from £35. For more info on how to register, please visit http://www.ukbartendersguild.co.uk

Vintage to Visionary – The Second Chapter

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It’s back and it’s better than ever. The cocktail competition that pays homage to the classics, as well as recognising the need to innovate and create drinks that fire the imagination and excite the taste buds. A prize of £1000 will be awarded to the bartender who ticks those boxes in the eyes of the judges.
The Vintage to Visionary competition is the collaboration of two great brands, Hayman’s Gin and The Bitter Truth range of Bitters and Liqueurs. Both are known for their passion for heritage, innovation and, most importantly, quality.

The competition seeks to find two drinks. The first drink should be inspired by the classic styles of drink and should use one gin from the Hayman’s range of five gins and any of the Bitter Truth range of ten Bitters and six Liqueurs.
The second drink is a perfect opportunity to showcase your talent and vision for innovative drinks making. Again, using the range from The Bitter Truth range of Bitters and Liqueurs and Hayman’s gins, the drink should bring forth exciting flavours, ingredients and methods to delight and surprise the judges. You will need to use a different SKU from the one used in your classic-style drink.
Based on last year’s competition, we expect competition to be fierce and with only four regional heats only a few will be successful.

Please send in your two drink recipes to emma@lovedrinks.co.uk by Friday 27th June 2014. Once the regional shortlist has been decided, they will compete against each other and will be judged on the following criteria:

• Name of the cocktail – 10 points
• Appearance of the cocktail – 15 points
• Taste of the cocktail – 30 points
• The aroma of the cocktail – 10 points
• The technical ability of the bartender – 10 points
• The promotion of the drink in the bar – 10 points
• Product knowledge – 15 points

The top two entrants from each heat will go onto compete in the final which will be held in London on Wednesday 20th August 2014. The recipes submitted in the regional should not change. However, the finalists will be expected to theme their presentation with appropriate dress and style.

Extra marks will be award for:

• Creativity – 10 points
• Style – 10 points
• Theme – 10 points
• Overall presentation – 20 points

Heats are booked for the 7th, 8th, 14th and 15th July 2014 with the final being held in London on Wednesday 20th August 2014. The location of the heats will be decided after entries have been collated and competitors will be contacted in advance.

If you have any questions about the competition, please contact Love Drinks PR Manager, Emma Currin via email: emma@lovedrinks.co.uk

Entrants can use any of the following in their drinks:

The Bitter Truth Aromatic Bitters
The Bitter Truth Orange Bitters
The Bitter Truth Celery Bitters
The Bitter Truth Creole Bitters
The Bitter Truth Jerry Thomas Bitters
The Bitter Truth Lemon Bitters
The Bitter Truth Grapefruit Bitters
The Bitter Truth Chocolate Bitters
The Bitter Truth Peach Bitters
The Bitter Truth Tonic Bitters
The Bitter Truth Apricot Liqueur
The Bitter Truth Elderflower Liqueur
The Bitter Truth Violet Liqueur
The Bitter Truth Pimento Dram
The Bitter Truth Golden Falernum
The Bitter Truth Elixier
Hayman’s London Dry Gin
Hayman’s Old Tom Gin
Hayman’s Sloe Gin
Hayman’s 1850 Reservve Gin
Hayman’s Gin Liqueur
Hayman’s Royal Dock

Chivas Celebrates The Skill Of The Master Bartender With Exclusive New Cocktail Competition

Chivas Masters

Chivas Regal, the world’s first luxury Scotch whisky, is celebrating the craftsmanship at the heart of bartending with the launch of its first-ever global cocktail competition, The Chivas Masters.

The Chivas Masters sees the iconic brand highlight its rich heritage by challenging the world’s best bartenders to create classic cocktails from four of the great cocktail eras – the Classic Age (1880-1920) which saw the birth of Chivas Regal; the Post War Boom (1945-1965) during which time, Chivas 12 was introduced; the Disco Years (1975-1990) which saw the brand become a truly global icon, and the present modern Age of Revivalism, as Chivas continues to build its reputation as an icon of timeless luxury, renowned for its exceptional quality.

The high level of expertise required from entrants into the Chivas Masters is highlighted by the involvement of world-renowned, award-winning* bartender, Agostino ‘Ago’ Perrone of London’s prestigious Connaught Bar. A previous winner of the World’s Best Bartender award at Tales of the Cocktail, Ago has created an exclusive cocktail in celebration of the Chivas Masters and will also use his unique expertise as a member of the panel of judges during the competition.

The exclusive competition culminates in a two-day grand final, to be held in New York in July which will be judged by a distinguished panel of leading bartenders, past and present, from New York’s bar scene. They will be tasked with judging competitors on various criteria, including their knowledge of each era’s cocktail heritage, their creativity and ability to bring the story behind their serves to life for the judges, as well as the name, appearance and quality of their cocktail creations. The overall winner will be announced at an exclusive ceremony in New Orleans at the world’s premier cocktail festival, Tales of the Cocktail.

Richard Black, Global Brand Director for Chivas Regal, comments: “As one of the only truly global brands that has been present in each of the great cocktail eras, Chivas has a long association with the global on trade. We respect the hard work required to become a highly skilled mixologist, just as bartenders around the world respect the quality of Chivas.

“The Chivas Masters aims to harness this mutual admiration and demonstrate how relevant Chivas remains in today’s global bar scene, over 100 years since it first took the US by storm. We hope that the unique format of the Chivas Masters will inspire the world’s best bartenders to get involved and create a timeless classic cocktail – as timeless as our iconic brand.”

The Chivas Masters UK national final will take place June 5th in London. Over the next few months, heats will be taking place in an additional ten markets, including China, Japan and Chile. Only one competitor from each market will be selected to travel to New York to take part in the grand final in July.

The Black Pearl Tour – Docking In A City Near You

2013 Punch Pong final

The nation’s bartenders have the chance to show off their swashbuckling mixing skills this summer as The Black Pearl Tour takes to the road with exciting competitions, tutored tastings and training with experts from Monin and Plantation Rum.

The Black Pearl Tour visits 10 locations up and down the UK and features workshops with both Monin and Plantation followed by regional heats of the 2014 UK Monin Cup – all finished off with the Underground Punch Pong League’s (UPPL) Monin & Plantation Bartenders’ Challenge Cup.

The successful individuals and teams will compete for places in the grand finals of both competitions during London Cocktail Week in October.

MONIN CUP

For the Monin Cup regional heats, contestants have eight minutes to make an alcoholic cocktail using at least 20ml of any Monin syrup or puree. The UK final will be held in the new Monin Studio in Shoreditch, with the overall winner representing the UK at the International Monin Cup Final in Paris in December. Entrants must be aged 27 or under – to enter, submit your cocktail recipe here.

UPPL – MONIN & PLANTATION BARTENDERS’ CHALLENGE CUP

The Monin & Plantation Bartenders’ Challenge Cup was founded in 2013 by JJ Goodman from the London Cocktail Club, and supported by Monin brand ambassador James Coston. The competition took the UK bar scene by storm as bartenders competed against each other in ‘beer pong’-style tournaments. This year, the signature UPPL punch is The Black Pearl, which contains Plantation rum and Monin Orgeat and Grenadine syrups and is currently on the menu at the London Cocktail Club.

James Coston, Monin’s UK brand ambassador, said: “The Monin Cup is a keenly-contested international challenge to be the best of the best in which expert judges look for the highest standards of taste, presentation, consistency, creativity and style. Entry to one of the regional heats also gives you and a colleague the chance to take part in the more informal Monin & Plantation Bartenders’ Challenge Cup later that evening. The whole tour is a great opportunity for bartenders across the country to learn about our huge product range, but also to have fun and show how creative they can be.”

To find out more and to sign up for the workshops, Monin Cup and the UPPL Monin & Plantation Bartenders’ Challenge Cup, visit http://www.punchpong.com.

The Black Pearl Tour – Schedule

The dates and locations of the regional heats are as follows – all regional heats start at 1pm.

Cardiff – Monday 9 June – Maddison
Bristol – Tuesday 10 June – Big Chill
Nottingham – Monday 23 June – Boilermaker
Birmingham – Tuesday 24 June – Island Bar
Manchester – Tuesday 8 July – Luck, Lust Liquor & Burn
Liverpool – Wednesday 9 July – Salt Dog Slims
Leeds – Wednesday 16 July – Jake’s Bar & Grill
Glasgow – Tuesday 22 July – Blue Dog
Belfast – Wednesday 23 July – Love & Death
London – Tuesday 29 July – London Cocktail Club – Oxford Circus

Finalists Announced For The Chairman’s Reserve Cocktail Competition At Northern Restaurant and Bar

Chairmans Reserve

The five recipes have been chosen to go through to the final of the Chairman’s Reserve Cocktail Competition, to be staged at The Northern Restaurant and Bar Show in Manchester on Wednesday 19th March at 3:15pm.

With expert opinions by Peter Holland of The Floating Rum Shack, and Steven James of Rum Diaries, the five have been selected, with Steven commenting “I like ‘rum forward’ drinks that play to the strengths of the base spirit…..and whether I myself would order the drink in a bar. I know Chairman’s Gold as a rum and think that the flavours and presentation of the chosen entries will highlight the Rum”.

Taking into account the high calibre of recipes, and the feedback by Peter and Steven, organiser Dave Marsland, aka Drinks Enthusiast, and Emporia Brands, the distributors for the St Lucia Distillers based rum here in the UK, have decided to open an extra slot, making it six competitors overall.

The selected finalists are:

Emma Andrew – 99 Hanover Street Bar, Edinburgh
Amir Javaid – Epernay, Manchester
Adrian Calderbank – The Church Green, Lymm
Adam Binnersley – Corridor, Salford
Adam Day – The Violet Hour, Didsbury
Tom Higham – Kosmonaut, Manchester

All 6 are invited down to the main stage at the Northern Restaurant and Bar, and have the chance to recreate their drink to the judging panel. This year, they will each need to impress Mark Ludmon, Editor of Bar Magazine, Lyndon Higginson of The Liars Club, Manchester and Scott Wallace of Emporia Brands. Each judge will be looking for knowledge on the Chairman’s Reserve brand, the appearance and presentation of the drink, the aromas of the cocktail and finally how it tastes.

The winner will visit St Lucia as the guest of St Lucia Distillers, who beat off the challenge from the world’s finest malt whisky and cognac distilleries to take the trophy for Individual Distiller of the Year at the International Spirits Challenge 2013. The visit will include rum training at this distinguished distillery, and the chance to share expertise with the island’s enthusiastic bartenders, as well as plenty of opportunity to find out why the beautiful island of St Lucia is one of the world’s favourite Caribbean destinations.

Chivas Celebrates The Skill Of The Master Blender With Exclusive New Cocktail Competition

Chivas Masters

As the world’s first luxury Scotch whisky, recognised by modern gentlemen around the globe for its exceptional quality, timeless style and exclusivity, Chivas Regal deserves a place in all the world’s finest bars.

Chivas Regal is aiming to spread this message amongst the bartender community this year as it launches a bartender engagement programme, The Chivas Masters.

Over the coming months, Chivas will roll out a global five year programme, The Chivas Masters which will challenge the world’s finest bartenders to ‘travel back through time’, re-discovering the classic cocktails of the past and giving them a modern interpretation with Chivas.

The Chivas Masters is a truly international competition that will have a presence in every major region globally.

Follow #Chivasmasters to be a part of the journey.

Bombay Sapphire Announces The Return Of The World’s Most Imaginative Bartender Cocktail Competition

Bombay Sapphire Ultimate Gin & Tonic[1]

Special guest judges join Bombay Sapphire for UK and Ireland Final

Bombay Sapphire gin is pleased to announce once again that the brand is challenging bartenders across the globe to create world class and imaginative cocktails in the 2014 Bombay Sapphire World’s Most Imaginative Bartender Cocktail Competition. Now in its second year, this year’s UK and Ireland Final will take place on Wednesday 26th February at Shoreditch House.

A Re-Imagined Format

The competition sees 70 bartenders being invited to create two serves as part of a qualifying stage; submitting a signature Bombay Sapphire gin serve and their own re-imagined twist on the Bombay Sapphire Ultimate Gin & Tonic. Only 15 will go on to showcase their serves and compete against one another in the Semi-Final, which will celebrate the power of imagination in the UK’s cocktail community. Of the 15, just five will go through to the UK and Ireland Final, where one bartender will secure a place to represent the UK at the 2014 Bombay Sapphire World’s Most Imaginative Bartender Cocktail Competition Global Final, taking place in London in June 2014.

Judging the Challenge

The UK and Ireland Final will be judged by last year’s UK winner, Joe Wild of Berry and Rye in Liverpool. Joe will be joined by guest judge Simon Rogan, one of the most accomplished and well respected chefs in the UK. Renowned for his restaurant L’Enclume, which recently topped the list of the UK’s best restaurants , Simon Rogan will also be taking over the restaurant at Claridge’s this Spring. Completing the judging panel will be Global Bombay Sapphire Brand Ambassador Raj Nagra and Bombay Sapphire UK Brand Ambassador Sean Ware.

Bombay Sapphire UK Brand Ambassador Sean Ware commented: “We are very excited by this year’s Cocktail Competition. We have some of the most up-and-coming creative talents from across the industry participating, so getting to the Global Final will be no easy feat. The competition will not only challenge the competitors, but just as the unique taste of Bombay Sapphire gin is inspired by the infusion of its 10 exotic botanicals, it will inspire the next generation of up and coming bartenders all over the world. We look forward to seeing who will be representing the UK and Ireland in the Global Final!”

For more information on the Bombay Sapphire World’s Most Imaginative Bartender competition visit http://www.bombaysapphire.com/imaginativebartender.

#WMIB
@BSapphireGinUK
facebook.com/bombaysapphire

Enjoy BOMBAY SAPPHIRE Responsibly!

CHAIRMAN’S RESERVE OFFER THE TRIP OF A LIFETIME AT THE NORTHERN RESTAURANT AND BAR SHOW

Chairman's Reserve

A visit to St Lucia is the prize for the winner of the Chairman’s Reserve Cocktail Competition, to be staged at The Northern Restaurant and Bar Show in Manchester on Wednesday 19th March at 3:15pm.

Bartenders should register their recipe by Friday 28th February, with the organiser Dave Marsland aka Drinks Enthusiast, who is working alongside Emporia Brands, the distributors for the St Lucia Distillers based rum here in the UK.

Competitors will be asked to submit to Dave one drink. The recipe must contain at least 25 ml of Chairman’s Reserve Finest St Lucia rum, with thereafter a free-reign to create a unique cocktail worthy of the grand prize. You will have a maximum time limit of 5 minutes on stage in which to re-create your cocktail for the judging panel.

The winner will visit St Lucia as the guest of St Lucia Distillers, who beat off the challenge from the world’s finest malt whisky and cognac distilleries to take the trophy for Individual Distiller of the Year at the International Spirits Challenge 2013. The visit will include rum training at this distinguished distillery, and the chance to share expertise with the island’s enthusiastic bartenders, as well as plenty of opportunity to find out why the beautiful island of St Lucia is one of the world’s favourite Caribbean destinations.

A member of the judging panel this year will be rum Captain, Lyndon Higginson of The Liars Club, Manchester, who enjoyed the last trip over to St Lucia. “The last time I judged a Chairman’s Reserve Cocktail Competition, the weather was a bit warmer than Manchester in March, and the entrants were so enthusiastic following training sessions with us.  I am already envious of the winner, who will enjoy the Chairman’s XI experience in St Lucia later this year, visiting a world class distillery and meeting some great people.”

Entrants should email Dave Marsland at drinks_enthusiast@yahoo.co.uk with their recipe by midnight on Friday 28th February. Judges will pick their 5 favourites and their creators will be invited to demonstrate them at the Drinks Live stage at the Northern Restaurant and Bar Show. The following information is required within your submission:

Your name
Name and location of your work
Email address
Contact phone number
Cocktail name
Glassware
Ingredients in ml
Garnish

Chairman’s Reserve Finest St Lucia rum and basic bar equipment will be supplied at the final, with all other ingredients, garnishes and glassware to be provided by the competitor.

Judges will be scoring for knowledge on the Chairman’s Reserve brand, the appearance and presentation of the drink, the aromas of your cocktail and finally how it tastes.

The top 5 entrants will be contacted on March 5th and invited down to the final on March 19th.