UK Global final representative, and 2012 Three Most Promising announced at lavish UK final
Last Thursday, ten very nervous bartenders and a nervous hosting ambassador (unnecessarily nervous on Shervene’s part… She knocked it out of the park) converged on the Freemasons Hall in London for the Bacardi Legacy Cocktail Competition (BLCC) UK final.
BarLifeUK didn’t envy them, because the stakes were pretty high.
Last year’s ‘three most promising’ (Zdenek Kastanek – Quo Vadis; Jody Montheith* – The Liquorists; Metinee Kongsrivilai – The Bon Vivant) were about to find out who would be representing the UK at next week’s BLCC Global Final in Puerto Rico.
Alongside this, the eight winners of last year’s UK regional heats had to present their Legacy cocktail to an imposing panel of judges, hoping to become one of this year’s three most promising, and the chance to go on to represent the UK at next year’s Global final.
Got that? Excellent… On to the results.
The Freemasons Hall is an imposing place. The inside looks a little like a cathedral, and a lot like the place Tom and Nicole got freaky in Eyes Wide Shut.
The crowd was imposing too; the hall was packed, and if there is such a thing as a ‘bar industry celebrity’, then they were all there, and the atmosphere was charged.
First up came the eight regional finalists, and as you would expect, the standard of presentation was excellent. ‘Shaky’ Pete Jeary defied his nickname and was as solid as a rock. Jamie Jones was confident, assured and should have brought a box to stand on. Everyone was great, and despite the tension and sense of occasion, ‘calm and composed’ was the order of the day.
However, as Connor MacLeod was so fond of saying, ‘There can be only one’. Except in this case, there could be only three, proving once and for all that Highlander is a flawed, yet excellent film.
The judging panel completed their deliberations, and 2012’s three most promising were announced to be:
Gordon Purnell of Voodoo Rooms, Edinburgh
Dan Bovey of Sahara, Reading
Chris Moore of the Savoy, London
BarLifeUK would like to offer huge congratulations to Gordon, Dan and Chris; we will be watching your efforts to bring your Legacy cocktail to the masses with interest over the coming months.
And the UK BLCC Global Final hero is…
Zdenek Kastanek of Quo Vadis. Anyone who pays even passing attention to Facebook will have seen Zdenek’s Legacy cocktail, La Hermosa, gaining fame and support from all corners of the global bar industry.
BarLifeUK saw La Hermosa served in New Orleans during Tales of the Cocktail, and have had reports of it finding a place on the menu at over 20 bars in 15 different countries.
While international distribution isn’t the be-all and end-all of the Legacy competition, it is certainly a large part, and is also an indication of the drink’s quality and Zdenek’s passion and motivation to win the competition for the UK. And so, congratulations go to Zdenek for winning the UK leg of the BLCC, and good luck in the final. We’ll be there to cheer you on and report on the action.
We must also say commiserations to Metinee Kongsrivilai, who clearly made life difficult for the judges. Her drink, The Matinee, is a cracker, and her video, Jack and the Booze Stock is one of the funniest we’ve seen in ages. If things had gone the other way, May would have done the UK proud at the final.
*Jody Montheith was unable to attend the UK final.
Zdenek’s cocktail – La Hermosa:
60ml Bacardi Superior rum
25ml Lemon juice
20ml La Gitana manzanilla sherry
15ml Triple sec
15ml Orgeat 4 dashes Yellow Chartreuse
Put all ingredients into a highball, add crushed ice, then swizzle until diluted and chilled to perfection. Garnish with a lemon wedge and a sprig of mint.
Gordon’s cocktail – Silver Ghost:
37.5ml Bacardi Superior
25ml Lime juice
25ml Apple juice
12.5ml Velvet Falurnum
12.5ml Rock candy syrup
20ml Egg white 2 pods of cardamom Garnish of lemon thyme sprigs
Shake all the ingredients hard with ice and strain into the glass.
Dan’s cocktail – El Momento Perfecto:
45ml Bacardi Superior
25ml Lillet Blanc
4 Dashes of orange bitters
1 spoon of Strong breakfast marmalade
Combine all the ingredients in a mixing glass and stir to dissolve the marmalade. Add cubed ice and stir until chilled. Julep-strain into an Old Fashioned glass over cubed ice and garnish with a lemon twist.
Chris’ cocktail – Encantador
40ml Bacardi Superior
10ml Eau de Framboise
20ml Fresh lemon juice
10ml Vanilla syrup
5ml Miclo Framboise eau de vie
Shake hard with mostly cubed and a little crushed ice. Fine-strain into a chilled coupette. Garnish with a lime twist.