Diageo World Class Competition Reveals Top Eight GB Finalists



Renowned global bartending competition, World Class, has selected the top eight finalists set to compete in the GB virtual final taking place this April.


Five new finalists will join Stevie Kane, Kuba Korzynski and James Rawcliffe who were victorious in the bottled Cocktail Challenge, winning their place in the final back in September 2020 as part of the series of London Cocktail Week challenges.


Each finalist has been carefully selected by the World Class expert panel of judges after creating and presenting standout serves as part of the Top 100 Semi Final, The Singleton Challenge: Malt Memories. The Semi Finals took place virtually this year and the finalists astounded judges with the following serves:


Alexa Farrow, London

In Memoriam: The Singleton of Dufftown 12yo Chamomile, Jasmine & Eucalyptus Cordial, Belsazar Riesling Vermouth


Stefanie Anderson, Edinburgh

Between Two Sunbeams: The Singleton of Dufftown 12yo, Tamarind, Lychee & Eucalyptus, Soda


Mark McClintock, London

Ecossaise: The Singleton of Dufftown 12yo, Floral Pistachio Orgeat, Lemon


Murray Drysdale, Edinburgh

Trinity Highball: The Singleton of Dufftown 12yo, Rhubarb and Custard Cream Soda Cordial, Soda


Matt Arnold, Birmingham

Anamnesis: The Singleton of Dufftown 12yo, Charred Barley infused Elderflower Liqueur, Water Blend

The finalists will compete to achieve the accolade of becoming GB’s World Class Bartender of the year 2021 and go on to represent GB in the World Class Global Finals. The 2021 final will be hosted virtually and showcased via the World Class Facebook page.


It’s an exciting first for World Class & the GB Competition. The final has been meticulously designed by World Class partner agency Sweet&Chilli to ensure the magic of the competition is brought to life, showcasing the creativity and skill of the Top 8 competitors. Finalists will compete in two virtual challenges showcasing their cocktails, skills, personality & craft using Tanqueray No. TEN, Johnnie Walker and Talisker. The final will be broadcast on April 23rd 2021.


This year’s Diageo World Class GB competition has been headed up by Jo Last, World Class & Malt Whisky Ambassador and Pippa Guy, World Class & Tanqueray Ambassador, who have been curating the challenges and overseeing the competition in its new format.


Jo Last, World Class & Malt Whisky Ambassador, comments: “Taking World Class virtual this year has been a new experience, but we’re overjoyed with its success so far. It was important for us to stay connected with our community of bartenders and to innovate, by adding new challenges to match the increased standards of competitors. We’re really impressed by all the entries this year and how well the competitors have adapted to the new virtual platform.”


Pippa Guy, World Class & Tanqueray Ambassador, adds: “We have really enjoyed being able to spend time with each of our competitors albeit virtual, and pleased to have been able to continue showcasing the amazing talent that the GB hospitality and drinks sector have to offer. Thank you to all those who entered and congratulations to our top eight finalists!”


As part of this year’s prize package, the winner will secure a 12-month contract with the world’s first dedicated bartender talent agency, Global Bartending, founded by former Diageo World Class Manager Dan Dove. The specialist agency will work alongside the winner to create a bespoke support programme based on their career interests and assist them in preparations for the global competition. Dan Dove has over 20 years industry experience in the luxury drinks sector and joins this year’s panel of judges for the World Class GB finals.


This year’s prize also includes a place on a WSET Level 3 Award in Spirits course. This advanced level qualification has been carefully developed for professionals wishing to acquire a detailed understanding of the spirits of the world and develop the tasting skills required to accurately describe and evaluate a spirit.


Dan Dove, Founder and Managing Director at Global Bartending comments: “I’m thrilled to be judging the GB finals this year and to be able to support the winner with their next career steps. It seemed a natural fit to be able to provide support and guidance completely bespoke to the winner’s journey. Very best of luck to the top eight.”

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