Diageo Australia has announced the top 25 bartenders who are now through to the next round of Diageo Reserve World Class, the industry’s biggest and most prestigious bartending competition. 

Diageo Australia representatives judged signature drinks as well as short videos created by the Top 100 bartenders. 

Entries considered by judges to best display complexity through simplicity, a unique interpretation of community and the garden-to-glass movement made it through to the Top 25.

These bartenders will now travel to Sydney on May 14 and 15 to participate in the inaugural World Class Academy. 

Comprised of a series of workshops and challenges hosted by a panel of industry experts, the Academy is designed to inspire bartenders to excel at their craft and educate them before they head to the final round.

As part of the Academy, the Top 25 bartenders will partake in a rum workshop hosted by Ian Burrell, the global rum ambassador.

Additionally, co-owner and chef at Three Blue Ducks, Darren Robertson, will use his culinary expertise to host a session on sustainability and using the whole ingredient; Luke Ashton will teach bartenders about the art of flavour infusion; and Tim Philips will prepare bartenders for the global finals with a series of on-the-spot challenges.

The winner of this year's Diageo Reserve World Class Australia competition will not only have the chance to follow in the footsteps of Luke Ashton and Tim Philips by representing Australia at the Global Finals, they will also win a once in a lifetime tailor-made experience. 

This experience will see the Australian winner travel to Scotland to learn the art of blending at the Johnnie Walker distillery; master the craft of maturation at the George Dickel distillery in Tennessee; hone their knowledge of rum at the Zacapa rum distillery in Guatemala; and tour the iconic Bundaberg Distilling Company. 

Here the winner will have the opportunity to act as an apprentice master craftsman, and work with the Bundaberg Distilling Company’s Master Distillers to create 100 bottles of their own limited-edition, small batch rum blend.

Bartenders through to the top 25:

Alan Raythorn, Black Pearl (VIC);
Alex Archibald, Walrus Club (QLD);
Alex Dickson, Neighbourhood (NSW);
Alexander Boon, Fourth Wall (QLD);
Andrew Bennett, The Classroom (WA);
Andy Griffiths, The Rum Diary Bar (VIC);
Ben Blair, The Crossing (NSW);
Charles Ainsbury, EDV (NSW);
Christopher Amon, Woods of Windsor (VIC);
Dominic Xavier, Cobbler (QLD);
Fred Siggins, Black Pearl (VIC);
Geoff Fewell, Lui Bar (VIC);
Gorge Camorra, Cloud9 (VIC);
Jack Krzywdzinski, Mrs Hyde (VIC);
Jenna Hemsworth, Thomas Olive (VIC);
Jonothan Carr, MOJO Record Bar (NSW);
Lewis Hall, Black Pearl (VIC);
Matthew O'Sullivan, Kerbside (QLD);
Nick Selvadurai, Cookie (VIC);
Nikita Ward, Hazy Rose (NSW);
Oscar Eastman, 1806 (VIC);
Rinna Kato, Black Bird (QLD);
Rodrigo Vega, Ananas (NSW);
Simon Toohey, The Crossing (NSW);
Taka Shino, Magazin (NSW). 

The Shout Team

The leading online news service for Australia's beer, wine, spirits and hospitality industries.

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