Top Bartenders Get Ready for Cocktail Competition

World Class cocktail - the Smokey Apple Julep
World Class cocktail – the Smokey Apple Julep

The battle to become the world’s best bartender is on. This year, 5,500 cruise line bartenders from three of the world’s leading cruise lines have been shaking it up in the Diageo Global Travel World Class Programme in pursuit of their place in the Diageo Reserve World Class Final.

Only one can go forward to represent Global Travel at the World Class Bartender of the Year Global Grand Final in Cape Town later this year, competing against the best bartenders from around the globe.

Last year’s winner, Charles Joly, has experienced a life-changing journey filled with new and exciting opportunities such as mixing at Jenson Button’s wedding and the Grammy Awards.

All 5,500 bartenders who took part in the training were put through a series of competitive heats to find the top three. They will now face-off at the glitzy World Class Global Travel Final in the deluxe Diageo 396 Bar in Miami, Florida on July 9th 2015. They are:

  • Wade Cleophas, 29, South Africa: Norwegian Cruise Line
  • Santos Mercedes Enriquez, 39, Peru: Celebrity Cruises
  • Shekhar Grover, 28, India: Royal Caribbean International

The expert judging panel includes Enrique de Colsa, Master Distiller for Tequila Don Julio; Spike Marchant, World Class Global Brand Ambassador; Erik Lorincz, World Class Bartender of the Year 2010; and Julio Cabrera, Managing Partner of The Regent Cocktail Club in Miami.

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Rakesh Raman