UK winner announced for Bols Around the World

Elliot Ball Bols Around the WorldElliot Ball (pictured) of London bar Steam & Rye has won a place to represent the UK at the Bols Around the World global semi-finals in Amsterdam.

Along with 17 other contenders from outside the UK, he was selected from over 3,000 bartenders in 76 countries who entered the international competition.

Elliot came up with a drink called Pangaean Roots, which combines Bols Genever with three Bols liqueurs Parfait Amour, Vanilla Liqueur and Dry Orange Curaçao plus bergamot oil, cardamom and ginger. See below for the full recipe.

Click here for a video of Elliot demonstrating and explaining his drink.

The semi-finals in May will be followed the same week by the Grand Final, also in Amsterdam, on May 20, which will be broadcast live around the world on at 8pm Central European Time (7pm UK time).

The global webcast audience will have the chance to vote for their favourite bartender to win the Audience Award. The action-packed hour-and-a-half show will feature the newest and most innovative flair show by world champion tandem flair artists Tomek & Marek.

The 18 semi-finalists will be put through their paces during a four-day intensive Bols experience in Amsterdam when each of the competitors will be called on to showcase a breadth of skills and be scrutinised by a six-strong international judging panel.

The judges have been charged with finding “the world’s most visionary bartender, an innovator focused on creating the next trend in bartending”.

Just eight of the 18 will be picked for the Grand Final when they will compete to become Bols Bartending World Champion 2014. The prize includes a 10-day global bar tour, a guest bartending shift in top bars in four cocktail capitals of the world and the chance to represent Bols Around the World at a number of major global events during the year.

Open to applicants from across the globe, the competition featured three heats that culminated in one representative from each of the 18 regions being invited to participate in the semi-finals.

The heats were firstly the development of a drink concept, secondly the creation of a drinks menu inspired by the new concept and finally a two-minute video to convince judges why their idea could become the next big drinks trend.

Judges looked for entrants “who are not afraid to take risks, challenge the status quo and set new rules”. As contestants progressed through the competition they built their own digital portfolio, a dedicated page containing their drink concept, menu and video, facilitated by, to help them to promote themselves globally and further their careers.

The global panel of judges across both the semi-finals and Grand Final will be headed by Malika Saidi, head trainer at Bols Bartending Academy. The other judges are: Sean Muldoon and Jack McGarry of The Dead Rabbit Grocery and Grog in New York city; Robbie Bargh, founder of global hospitality consultancy Gorgeous Group; Ago Perrone, global brand ambassador for Galliano and head mixologist at London’s Connaught Bar; and Rusty Cerven, Bols Bartending World Champion 2013 and bartender at the Connaught Bar.

Lucas Bols global brand manager Ara Carvallo said: “We have evolved Bols Around the World significantly this year, intensifying the level of competition yet further.

“Creativity in the bartending community, as evidenced by the commitment and passion of participants seems to know no bounds and we are therefore very excited to welcome the final 18 to Amsterdam in May and to share the Grand Final live through the webcast for the first time, sharing the creativity of bartenders working with Bols to an even wider global audience.”

The Bols Around The World 2014 semi-finalists are:

Region 1 Canada: Frederic Lafontaine
Region 2 USA: Kate Gerwin
Region 3 Brazil: Jéssica dos Santos
Region 4 Argentina: Rodrigo Pascual Tubert
Region 5 UK: Elliot Ball
Region 6 Finland: Pekka Valitalo
Region 7 Germany: Christian Kern
Region 8 Italy: Paolo Baccino
Region 9 Austria: Dominik Wolf
Region 10 France: Sami Mersel
Region 11 Netherlands: Airto Cramer
Region 12 Estonia: Andrei Kazakov
Region 13 Russia: Katerina Babich
Region 14 Poland: Arek Stefaniak
Region 15 United Arab Emirates: Christian Pineda Aguacia
Region 16 Japan: Yukiko Watanabe
Region 17 Hong Kong: Antonio Lai Chun Nam
Region 18 Australia: Jack Sotti

Pangaean Roots by Elliot Ball

2 coins of fresh ginger
Seeds of 3 cardamom pods
20ml Bols Parfait Amour
10ml Bols Vanilla Liqueur
10ml Bols Dry Orange Curaçao
15ml Lime juice
1 drop of bergamot oil
40ml Bols Genever

Muddle the ginger and cardamom. Add the rest of the ingredients and shake with ice. Strain into a tall chilled glass without ice. Garnish with lemon peel, rose petal and cardamom pod on the rim.

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