Bacardi UK Tiki Team Win Again in Miami – Still World Tiki Champions

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Shortly after the UK beat an American team in a Miami tiki-off this time last year, Jeff ‘Beachbum’ Berry proclaimed the UK the “home of Tiki”.

America, you've been tikied. Again.

Having successfully defended their World Tiki Champions crown at the 2011 Rum Renaissance Festival last week, BarLifeUK will be lobbying for the erection of giant stone tiki-heads atop the White Cliffs of Dover, in honour of the UK Bacardi Tiki Team.

Our congratulations go to Lyndon Higginson (capt), Matthew Dakers, Rich Hunt, Bart Murphy and Paul McFadyen for representing the UK so well – you made us proud lads, despite having the palest legs in America.

With that shamelessly biased and patriotic introduction out of the way, we bring you the official match report, as we couldn’t be there in person to record the action:

This year’s Rum Renaissance Festival, held at the Deauville Beach Resort in Miami saw the return of the Bacardi UK Tiki Team to defend their title as 2010 World Tiki Champions in the Tiki Face-Off against their American hosts.

The team had all the credentials and rum pedigree needed for the challenge ahead, led by Captain, Lyndon Higginson (Keko Moko) with Rich Hunt (Hawksmoor), Matthew Dakers (Mahiki) , Bart Murphy (Hula Tiki Lounge) and Paul McFadyen (Consultant).

The Tiki Face-Off comprised of two events: the Ready Steady Shake and the main event, the Tiki Face-Off, with both teams eager to get going, the rematch was on, the challenges were set and the battle began.

Ready Steady Shake

In Ready Steady Shake the US team made a spiced daiquiri and had two of their team on stage frantically shaking their tins in sequence; unfortunately one got carried away and dropped their shaker losing everything…however they regained themselves and the judges all concurred that the flavour profile was fantastic.

Next it was the turn of the Brits, the Bacardi team cunningly improvised and stole a chest full of ice, creating a giant treasure chest that not only the judges could try but the entire audience, despite their endeavours the US team took the round by a single point…. It was game on!!

The Tiki Face Off

With all the excitement around the Royal Wedding both in the UK and the United States it made perfect sense that the patriotic UK team would be thinking about the big day.

So when Matthew Dakers appeared on stage in a white dress it was no surprise that he was the bride to be, the ‘Princess of Tiki’ ready to be wed to the groom, Lyndon Higginson ‘Trader Vic’ the self-professed godfather of Tiki.

As the ceremony progressed, ‘the priest’ aka Rich Hunt asked “if anyone objected”? Inevitably, Bart Murphy ‘Don the Beachcoomber’ jumped up in protest.

Following the protest, the self-professed ‘godfathers’ ‘Trader Vic’ and ‘Don the Beechcomber’ then proceeded to create the famous Zombie and Mai Tai, using Bacardi Superior Rum.

Playing the part of ‘The wedding host’ Paul McFadyen had the whole congregation (the audience) and the judges on their feet to limbo under a giant sugar cane and onto the stage to try both drinks.

In the meantime, Rich ‘the priest’ Hunt had been busy creating a Royal Wedding Bacardi cocktail in a quintessentially British tea pot, which was then served to judges and the congregation.

The US team were up next and brought a giant paddling pool to the stage where they poured a rainbow of ingredients into the pool, unfortunately the drink appeared to go a rather dull colour, would there be a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow for the US team?

Following some heated deliberations by the judges, the Bacardi UK team were crowned World Tiki Face-Off Champions for the second year running. The judges confessed, “watching the Bacardi UK Tiki team work the stage and their magic you can see why they held onto their title”.

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Editor

Andy Ives has over 10 years hospitality publishing to his name and has written for trade magazines such as CLASS and Theme. Most recently he worked as editor of Industry magazine (the Australian version of Theme), bars editor of Australian Bartender magazine, and launched (with Simon) www.4bars.com.au, which is now Australia’s leading bar industry website.

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