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The Champion of Bacardi Legacy 2018 is...

Updated: a day ago



There isn't anything quite like is there? A global cocktail competition spanning over 10 years & the entire world. 10 Years of blood, sweat & tears as well as 10 unique champions from all over the world. Friendships made for a lifetime, love found & legacies forged. This is Legacy & we're here with

Cocktails For You to share this years story with the world

The final Top 8 of the Bacardi Legacy this year was held in a 500 year old building in the centre of Mexico City & the line-up was one the strongest in years: Mexico - Ana Alicia Herrera India - Akhilesh Japan - Akira Abe Australia - James Irvine

Netherlands - Eric van Beek

Greece - Antonis Mantzaridis

Argentina - Juan Ignacio Quijano

Cyprus - Constantinos Kazelis


Cool, calm & collected for someone with the weight on their shoulder to represent a country as historical & grand as Mexico. One of 2 Latino finalists in the final Ocho as she stood there preparing her cocktail the crowd chanted "Mexico" sending shivers down the spine of all.

The entire country was behind her in this moment & all eyes were on her as the opening act...

Mexico - Ana Alicia Herrera The Devil Woman 60ml Bacardi Carta Blanca 5ml Lemon Oleo Sacharrum 5ml Italian Bitter Aperitif 5ml Martini Extra Dry Vermouth


A presentation unlike any others in the competition it could be described as the seducing dance of a cobra who is waiting to strike. Every ingredient simply a chant in a spell to break you apart & rebuild you in front of your own eyes, every single word she uttered like another coil around our necks as we wish to try her cocktail sooner & end our suffering.

This was no pink martini made by some girly girl, this was a defiant, powerful yet humble witch. And before we know it we became part of her coven of Devilish delights!

India - Akhilesh

Eternal Spirit

45ml Bacardi Carta Blanca

15ml Martini Bianco

10ml Amaretto

20ml Lemon Juice

1 Bar Spoon Caster Sugar

3 Slices of cucumber

Next up was a young but powerful man from India, a proud man far away from him home he is proudly greeted the crowd here in the room as well as back home in New Delhi. Giving tribute the late & great Don Facundo as well as his family he bowed his head to those that came before him on this stage as well as all the bartenders who've attempted to climb the mountain that is Bacardi Legacy over the last 10 years.

Cutting it close to exactly 0:01 seconds as the crowd was literally at the edge of their seat with nervousness. His Eternal Spirit rang true to his heart!

Japan - Akira Abe

Eternal Spirit

50ml Bacardi Ocho

40ml Martini Asti Spumante

30ml Espresso

15ml Muscovado Syrup

8 Mint Leaves


Our man from the land of the rising sun was something of a end game boss fight or the a Yakuza in a manga. He had promised to us a unique presentation unlike any other with an exterior that seemed so serious but the moment he raised his voice the entire room was on his side. A career that started 8 years ago he went made fantastic connection between the Japanese Kanji for Ocho or as he said it "Hachi".


Every ingredient carefully intertwined around the entire history of the Bacardi family as well linking his own personal heritage with sugar produced in the small island of Japan he wss originally from. The entire room was on his side even if not always everything made sense & it takes an amazing professional as well as talent to be able to control a room through your body language and demeanour alone.

The moment we thought the magic was over Akira dropped a bombshell bigger than anything possible. He took off his jacket, PROPOSED TO HIS GIRLFRIEND & brought the house down.



We bow our head to you Akira, you are unique, irreplaceable & forever in our hearts!

Australia - James Irvine

Bocado

50ml Bacardi Reserva Ocho

12.5ml Creme De Bananes Liqueur

10ml Noilly Prat

10ml Palo Cortado Sherry

3 Drops of Rosemary Oil


As Australia took the stage the classic chants of "Aussie Aussie Aussie- Oi Oi Oi!" could be heard from the continent down under. Electro soundtrack filling the room he came in like a showman of the times gone by with a presentation that was fresh & gave props as he had to follow after Japan's intense presentation. James chose to give props to those who have shaped his career as well as his path to the bartending profession. In true Australian down to Earth demeanour he made numerous inside jokes with regards "cross-branding" as well as giving a sort of running-commentary about his own performance.


Be good or be good at it & James certainly is all of the above. Get that "finishing early" thing checked out mate!

Netherlands - Erik van Beek

Carino

50ml Bacardi Ocho

5ml Yellow Chartreuse

30ml Greek Yoghurt

20ml Vanilla Syrup

10ml Lemon Juic


As Robin Williams Disney song from Aladdin was playing in the background & Erik came on stage some of the loudest chants came not just from the Dutch support team but also from the other competitors who didn't necessarily make it to the final 8.

Erik brought something truly unique to the table, his presentation delivered in "Spoken Word" with 7 minutes of true magic. We hung on every word Erik spoke in front of over 400 people, his message is one of love & togetherness in a time such as now when we seem divided the most.


One would think that when a presentation is delivered through a rehearsed script but delivered in such a way that it feels fresh each time. His time running row he didn't break a sweat speaking the true word of Bacardi family without seeming & almost stumbling right at the end he found his voice again, overcame his mountain & became untameable


Semilla - Antonis Mantzaridis

Semilla

45ml Bacardi Reserva Ocho

25ml Martini Reserva Ambrato

7.5ml Martini Reserva Bitter

5ml D.O.M. Benedictine

4 Dashes of Soy Sauce


Like a old Greek God stepping down from his Pantheon he spoke of planting something & helping develop it as well as grow it into something further. As the entire crowd as asked to close their eyes & be taken away on a journey of growth & development. As eyes became wide open smiles littered the room with a presentation almost like a hug & words so softly spoken they were like butterflies trying to kiss.

In the end the message was that of connection, a connection between people, the Earth beneath us & the world around us. Every ingredient just part of the bigger picture that helps us grow into everything we ever imagined ourselves to be.


The Semilla: "When life gives you lemons you create the poorest garnish available for you cocktail"

Argentina - Juan Ignacio Quijano

Magno

40ml Bacardi Ocho

15ml Palomino Fino Sherry

15ml Cassis Liqueur

1 Barspoon Fernet Branca

4 Basil Leaves


The second Latin competitor & first time representative of the nation of Argentina. His approach was much more real & true to our hearts as people because for those 7 minutes we left our epic location of a 500 year old museum but were rather sitting in front of his bar back home.

Like a true bartender he was a therapist, even if an unlicensed one & after some of the presentations we saw earlier this fresh approach was much more pleasant at this late point t in the competition. Staying true to his heritage of an Argentinian he raised his glass to those with maybe many more years than him but nevertheless we could see that he would join those legends he looks up to in the future.


Passion & character truly met in this cocktail & in this wonderful bartender. Through the hard times & the good times!

Cyprus - Constantinos Kazelis

Back in Black

45ml Bacardi Carta Blanca

15ml Amaro

15ml Simple Syrup

10ml Lime Juice

1 Dash Aromatic Bitters

Top up with Tonic Water


Last but not least on stage was the proud Cypriote under the cover of ACDC “Back in Black” with a drink of the same name. One of the more unusual styles of drink in the combination he came out on stage in a t-shirt to throwback to his days as a prep guy over 5 years ago. Carefully playing homage to the judges without being obnoxious he linked his entire Legacy to that one of the most popular & original rum cocktails - Cuba Libre


The key to it all was replicability, simplicity & it was the only drink of the competition made in this way. His personality & charisma could be seen in exactly the same way that ended the evenings proceedings in a way that it always should’ve been - Back in Black!


As always every year a Top 3 is chosen as part of the competition & amongst those special individuals we find our Bacardi Legacy Champion.

Your Top 3 are:

Mexico - Ana Alicia Herrera Australia - James Irvine

Netherlands - Eric van Beek

The Champion of Bacardi Legacy Global Cocktail Competition 2018 is:

Netherlands - Eric van Beek