World Class Australia took to Sydney Harbour on board the Sydney Glass Island for a three hour cruise as nine of the country’s top bartenders competed in the semi-finals.
World Class is DIAGEO Reserve’s global search for the world’s best bartender, a competition that sees leading bartenders from nearly forty countries compete for the coveted title of “World Class Bartender of the Year”.
Sydney Glass Island
Elegant World Class booklets with voting cards were handed out to guests prior to boarding Sydney Glass Island, a passport into an afternoon of cocktail tasting. Cocktail stations were set up on the lower deck where consumers, trade and media rubbed shoulders and clinked glasses before voting for their favourite libation.
Cocktail stations on lower deck
MC Sean Baxter
Phil Gandevia with the Continental
Phil Gandevia (ex Eau de Vie, now the Roosevelt) entertained the crowds with the Continental, a World Class interpretation of the Martini made with the use of liquid nitrogen and silver gallone mixing glasses. A strong and sensational cocktail for die-hard Martini lovers served with a freshly shucked oyster.
Collin Perillo with Sydney Calling
Collin Perillo’s (Zeta Bar) cocktail, Sydney Calling, took inspiration from two classic drinks, the Greyhound from LA/San Francisco and the London Calling from his Milk & Honey days at the London bar. He infused Ketel One Vodka with Australian botanicals, added fino sherry and fresh grapefruit juice resulting in a delightful cocktail that makes a strong statement yet remains balanced and refreshing – much like Sydney itself.
Jason Williams with Breakfast in Bed
Jason Williams (theloft) served Breakfast in Bed using vodka and gin matched with fruit marmalade, white chocolate liqueur and lemon. Served with dandelion tea, a cucumber fizz and a fine orange mist – a cocktail guaranteed to get one out of bed.
Thiago Santos with Western Expression
Thiago Santos (theloft) turned you into a cocktail artist with his Western Expression cocktail. Gin, elderflower and lemon provide the base to which you can pick your choice of strawberry and Campari purée, cucumber purée and blue curacao purée – or all three, creating a mix of floral, bitter and citrus flavours in one drink.
Strawberry and Campari purée (red), cucumber purée (green) and blue curacao purée (blue)
Perryn Collier with Collier’s Sundown Cooler
Perryn Collier (the Laneway) presented the Collier’s Sundown Cooler, a light, zingy and fresh cocktail that epitomises the Australian summer. Using barbequeued spiced pineapple syrup and ginger cordial with gin, vodka and carbonated water from an esky, the cocktail was served with dehydrated pineapple and black pepper chips.
Sarah Miller with Dockers Union Punch
Sarah Miller (I Know a Place) took the punch to another level with Dockers Union Punch, using Singleton of Glen Ord 12 yo whisky with fresh juices and honey and spice. A serious cocktail that packs a punch for whisky lovers.
Sarah Miller from I Know a Place
Anita Strother with Core of My Heart
Anita Strother (Malt Dining) served up Core of My Heart, an Australiana homage with gin, mint and grapefruit foam – a light, summery and refreshing cocktail served with a spoon.
Core of My Heart Cocktail
Adam Smith with Our Little Secret
Adam Smith (Press Club) used his own “Little Ten Liquor” and Lillet Blanc with gin in Our Little Secret drawing on flavours from goji berries, rosemary and rooibos tea in a highly aromatic cocktail for those who like it on the sweet side.
Our Little Secret Cocktail and botanicals
Fred Siggins with US 10
Fred Siggins (Kodiak Club) celebrated American summers with backyard BBQs and beers with his US 10 cocktail (gin, pale ale and white grapefruit) served from his own beer bottle with a side of barbequeued corn.
Barbequeued corn and US10
A post-competition photo opportunity with Dr Phil & the Continental
The competition was judged by industry experts as well as guests casting their vote for their favourite cocktail in each category.
The Judges and Officials (L to R) – Matt Bruhn (DIAGEO Marketing Director), Emily Wheldon (RESERVE Senior Brand Manager), Pat Nourse (Gourmet Traveller), Sacha Delfosse (B&C trade media partner), Laurene Bourges (Behind Bars / RESERVE coordinator), Justin Smyth (Global Brand Ambassador for Ketel One), Ben Shipley (Everyday Drinking blog), Myffy Rigby (Time Out), Dan Kaufman (Barzine blog & SMH – not in photo)
The Bartenders (L to R): Adam Smith, Anita Strother, Fred Siggins, Sarah Miller, Thiago Santos, Perryn Collier, Jason Williams, Collin Perillo, Phil Gandevia
The Winners (L to R): Fred Siggins, Perryn Collier, Phil Gandevia
The winners were announced on board the upper deck, with Phil Gandevia from The Roosevelt winning the Gentleman category with The Continental , Perryn Collier from The Laneway winning the Punch category with Collier’s Sundown Cooler and Fred Siggins from the Kodiak Club with his US 10 cocktail in the Seasonal category.
Runners up were Collin Perillo, Zeta Bar (Gentlemen), Sarah Miller, I know a place (Punch) and Adam Smith, Press Club (Seasonal). Second runners up were Jason Williams, theloft (Gentlemen), Thiago Santos, theloft (Punch) and Anita Strother, Malt Dining (Seasonal).
The winners with their trophies (L to R): Phil Gandevia, Perryn Collier, Fred Siggins
Congratulations to all the winners who have now made it to the national finals which will be taking place in June 2012.
For a photo gallery of the event, “Like” Gourmantic on Facebook and tag the photos.
World Class Australia
Gourmantic attended the World Class Australia semi-finals event on Sunday 22 January 2012 as media guests. Photography by @MrGourmantic – All rights reserved.
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