Cheltenham's Bartender of the Year

Cheltenham's Bartender of the Year

Well...well, we'll, well. What can I say. What a competition. Full of excitement, anticipation, average chat and exceptional drinks.

We started at the Ox for a Portobello gin tasting and to kick off the 4 comps. Surprised in the final minutes with an entry from the one and only Jake Bernham. 

We moved on to Koj where the contestants were asked to pair thier drink to a Japanese dish called chawanmushi. A savoury egg based appetizer. Using Japanese whiskey Nikka from the Barrel, they made long savoury drinks.

We then had a well earned food break. 

Mamont vodka was the spirit, Croft and Jones was the setting for the "Service round". This was a different type of comp. Judges were sat at a table and pretended to be customers, testing their skills and judging them on taste and a accuracy to the script the judges had.

Last but not least, Lily Guns for the El Jimador speed round.  this is where it got messy. The contestants were asked to make 4 cocktails: Margarita, El Diabalo, Negringo (tequila Negroni), and of course the wild card, straight out of the 80s the Tequila Sunrise. They were just purley on speed and taste. So the quickest might not be the tastiest. Some of them came out wrong, some came out really wrong, and some were fantastic and quick.

It was a full on test for any bartender. But one did come out on top above all else and it was Kojs bar manager Dan Morgan. 

Thanks for coming all. Today is an Italiano Tasting at Fat Tonis. 

Jason