Now into it`s 6th year, the world`s most extreme and prestigious bartending competition The World Cocktail Cup is on at the moment in New Zealand. The theme for 2010 is Love, Drinks and Rock and Roll with 24 of the globe`s best spinning the bottle big-time.
In a scene more reminiscent of the Playboy mansion than a world class cocktail competition, 24 of the world’s best bartenders gathered poolside in their bathrobes to find out if they were being thrown off a bridge, out of a plane or swinging 400 metres above an icy Queenstown river.
It was Day 3 yesterday of the 42BELOW Cocktail World Cup and the competition continues to be as demanding and unpredictable as ever. After an appropriately ‘rock star’ party Tuesday night, the bartenders nursed a 42BELOW Bloody Mary as they were allocated their mystery activity for the day. Two members of the Irish team (including an Italian, no that’s not a joke) braved the JagAir aerial acrobatics trip over the Remarkables mountain range.
“It was a once in a lifetime experience but probably not the best remedy for a shocking hangover”, said Andy Ferreira. It wasn’t only the teams being thrown outside their comfort zone, our international judges were flown through canyons and gorges to a remote South Island river for some fly fishing.
With their adrenalin re-charged, the contestants headed to the shore of Lake Wakatipu for the event’s third challenge ‘Ready, Steady Shake’. Teams were given a set of mystery ingredients including obscure items like fig yoghurt, kumquat liqueur, hazelnuts and wasabi then had just 7 minutes to create and make a cocktail with them.
Judges said it was by far the closest challenge with three teams separated by less than half a point. But at last it was a win for the home team, New Zealand, who used their mystery box to create -‘It’s 42bro’. Not only did they create a unique cocktail, they also made their own custom made vessel using a plastic water bottle and a kitchen knife! Judge and editor of the UK’s “Class’ magazine Simon Difford said he was impressed with the team’s ability to work together, balance ingredients and its creativity”
The convoy celebrated its win in Queenstown at a luxurious penthouse joined by special VIP, 42BELOW founder Geoff Ross. It’s ten years since Ross sold his first bottle of homemade vodka in his home town of Wellington and six years since the first 42BELOW Cocktail World Cup was held.
“You are standing on the shoulders of many giants, I can recall every drink that was made during this competition by some truly exceptional bartenders,” said Ross.
Today, the cocktail convoy leaves Queenstown for New Zealand’s capital Wellington for a final challenge and rehearsals for the live grand final event this Saturday March 27th. The ‘Love, Drinks and Rock n Roll’ competition will finish in spectacular style with teams performing alongside kiwi rock act Midnight Youth and the 42BELOW Cocktail World Cup winner being crowned.