Happiness Forgets competition seeks up-and-coming bartending talent


Happiness Forgets Ali Burgess

Leading London bar Happiness Forgets has launched a new competition to find the UK’s best up-and-coming bartending talent.

With heats in Glasgow, Liverpool, Leeds and Bristol, it will offer the winner a chance to follow in the footsteps of global bartending legends to have their own “Unforgettable” week at the Hoxton Square bar.

As well as having a chance to work behind the bar, they will get to have six drinks on the menu throughout London Cocktail Week in October – or longer if they prove a hit with customers.

Entrants are required to create a drink of their choice, embodying freedom of expression and their personality. The base spirit must come from the UK portfolio of leading spirits and liqueurs importer Marussia Beverages, the partner in the competition.

The other ingredients are not limited to just Marussia’s products – and creativity and individuality are positively encouraged. The key is to stamp their style on the drink they are presenting.

Rhys Wilson, general manager of Happiness Forgets, said: “There is so much incredible talent across the UK bartending scene and we wanted to give someone an opportunity, and a platform, to showcase what they can do.

“We want to help nurture that talent nationwide. They will gain invaluable experience from the inside, seeing what it really takes to work in this fast-paced environment alongside some of the best. We’re excited to see them bring their A game!”

To enter, hopefuls must send their drink to manager@happinessforgets.com by August 1, 2016. It is open to bartenders working anywhere in the UK. The winners of each round will travel to London to battle it out against the other finalists behind the Happiness Forgets bar.

Happiness Forgets, founded by Alastair Burgess (pictured) in 2011, was named best UK bar in the GQ Food & Drink Awards this year and is currently in eighth place in the league table of World’s 50 Best Bars.

Previous “Unforgettable” night guests bartenders have included Andrea Montague, then at London’s Callooh Callay, Tom Walker, who was at The American Bar at The Savoy, Josh Fontaine and Carina Tsou of Candelaria in Paris, Richard Tring of Red Light in Bristol, Davide Segat of Punch Room at the London Edition hotel, Iain Griffiths of White Lyan and Dandelyan, and Erick Castro of Polite Provisions in San Diego. Each bartender brought a small, original drinks menu that they felt exemplified their personal style, which was offered to Happiness Forgets guests for one night only.

Marussia Beverages, previously known as Eaux de Vie, imports and distributes premium spirits including Mamont Vodka, Cherry Heering liqueur, Heaven Hill whiskeys, Compass Box whiskies, Teeling Whiskey, Aviation and Death’s Door gins, Mezan rums, Edmond Briottet liqueurs, Lunazul tequila, Amores mezcal, Hacienda de Chihuahua sotol, Akashi Tai sakes, G Miclo eaux-de-vie and a range of cognacs, armagnacs, calvados and sherries. Click here for its latest catalogue.

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