• Germany's news in English
 
app_header_v3

World Cocktail Championship shakes up Berlin

AFP · 12 Aug 2009, 08:06

Published: 12 Aug 2009 08:06 GMT+02:00

Over 800 bartenders from 52 countries competed in two categories: "classic" where taste is king, and "flair" where competitors pull off jaw-dropping routines, hurling bottles in the air, spinning shakers on their heads, all backed by thumping music and wildly cheering crowds.

"Give it up for Indiana Jones," shouted the announcer as the first "flair" participant - resplendent in Fedora hat - burst onto the stage to the theme tune of the blockbuster film, twirling bottles at astonishing speed.

But do not let the pounding music, baying crowds and razzmatazz fool you: it's a serious business and the connoisseurs and judges are every bit as exacting as the most snobbish wine critic.

Ever competitive, the Germans left nothing to chance this year and borrowed a trainer from the World Athletics Championships - due to start on August 15 in Berlin - for "fitness training."

"They warmed them up and got them fit for the Championships. I don't quite know how," Bernhard Stoehr, President of the German Bartenders Association, told AFP.

And the Germans were especially glad of their physical trainer after their own "flair" participant, Levent Yilmaz, sustained a career-threatening shoulder injury in the preliminary rounds.

"We think he hurt his shoulder throwing up a bottle yesterday and this morning he couldn't move his arm," said Stoehr.

"He had had eight injections in his arm," he said, adding he was glad there are no doping checks in the Cocktail World Championships.

But the drugs and the doctors worked their magic and the crowd saved their loudest cheer of the night for two-time world "flairtending" champion Yilmaz who wowed them by juggling four bottles and a shaker, at one point catching a rum bottle on the bridge of his nose, to ecstatic applause.

However, like the ice in his cocktail, the home favourite's dreams of a third world title were crushed by the British contender, Gianluigi Bosco, with his "Absolutely Rocking" concoction.

Shaking a potent mix of vodka, apple liqueur, mango juice, vanilla, lemon juice, lime, a slice of apple and red currants, Bosco impressed the jury with his complex juggling routine, at one point keeping four bottles in the air before catching them behind his back.

Story continues below…

Proudly waving a Union Jack flag, Bosco, 25, who speaks fluent French, Spanish and Italian as well as English, told AFP: "I still can't believe I'm World Champion."

"When I arrived, I thought I would be happy just to get to the final," he said.

Vladimir Banak, from the Slovak Republic, carried off the "classic" trophy with his "Sweet Road," a mix of raspberry vodka, black currant, vanilla and cream, garnished with cacao powder.

Banak's newly-crowned "cocktail of the year" will be served at the opening of the World Championships 2010, due to held in Singapore, announced Derek Lee, President of the International Bartenders Association, as he kicked off what promised to be one hell of a party.

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
President who pioneered Moscow ties dies aged 97
Former Cold War President of West Germany Walter Scheel. Photo: DPA.

Former West German president Walter Scheel, who helped pave the way for his country's rapprochement with the communist East, has died aged 97, his party's spokesman said on Wednesday.

Former East to lag behind West for years to come: study
Poverty in eastern Germany. File photo: DPA

Eastern Germany remains economically anaemic with little prospect of catching up with the rest of the country by 2030, a study published on Wednesday said.

Turkey's spy network in Germany 'thicker than Stasi's'
Photo: DPA.

Turkey has around 6,000 informants working in Germany, which experts say means they're each monitoring more people than the Stasi did in West Germany during the Cold War.

Germany's first 'intelligent' bridge to open in Nuremberg
File photo: DPA

An €11 million bridge, which is nearing completion in northern Bavaria, is set to include technology never seen before on the German Autobahn.

Stockpile food in case of attack, Germany tells citizens
Photo: DPA

Germany on Wednesday urged its population to stockpile food and water in case of terrorist or cyber attacks, as it adopted its first civil defence strategy since the end of the Cold War.

Ten injured after freight train crashes into bus in Osnabrück
The crash site in Osnabrück. Photo: DPA

A freight train crashed into a bus in Osnabrück on Wednesday morning, leaving several people badly injured, local media report.

Man wins ten-year court battle over €2.50 surcharge
Photo: DPA

An Austrian man has won a ten year court battle over an extra €2.50 he was asked to pay to get into a swimming pool in Bavaria a decade ago.

In Pictures
Düsseldorf swoons as Prince William comes for royal visit
'Well hello Mr. Prince'. Photo: DPA.

Prince William paid a visit to the Rhineland city of Düsseldorf on Wednesday to celebrate the state of North Rhine-Westphalia's 70th birthday. Here's a look at his royal stay.

Brexit
Frankfurt attempts to charm banks away from London
Frankfurt am Main. Photo: DPA

Germany's finance capital has spotted an opportunity with the Brexit-wary banking beasts of the Square Mile.

How did this bike end up on top of Berlin’s Molecule Man?
A professional climber 'rescuing' the bike hanging from the Molecule Man. Photo: DPA.

Berliners are still scratching their heads over how a bicycle ended up dangling from the capital’s iconic statue.

Sponsored Article
Why you should attend an international job fair
Gallery
Germany's 17 Olympic gold medals in pictures
Sponsored Article
Why expats choose international health insurance
Culture
7 American habits that make Germans very, very uncomfortable
Rhineland
Story of a fugitive cow who outwitted police for weeks before capture
Sponsored Article
Why you should attend an international job fair
Culture
Eleven famous Germans with surnames that'll make your sides split
Sponsored Article
Life in Jordan: 'Undiscovered treasure'
Lifestyle
The best ways to get a visa as an American in Germany
14 facts you never knew about the Brandenburg Gate
Society
Ten times Germans proved they really, really love beer
Sponsored Article
Why Jordan is the ‘Different’ East
Lifestyle
What's on in Germany: events for August 2016
Sponsored Article
Five things Americans should know about voting abroad
National
Six things you need to know when moving to Germany
Travel
These 10 little-known German towns are a must see
Sponsored Article
Jordan Pass: your ticket to the experience of a lifetime
International
German scientists prove birds can sleep while flying
Sponsored Article
Jordan: where history meets adventure
Technology
London v. Berlin: Which is better for startups?
Lifestyle
13 mortifying mistakes German learners always make
Sponsored Article
6 reasons expats use TransferWise to send money
Travel
Enter if you dare: Berlin's best abandoned haunts
Sponsored Article
Why you should attend an international job fair
Lifestyle
10 rookie errors all Brits make when they arrive in Germany
Sponsored Article
Five things Americans should know about voting abroad
National
How to get German citizenship (or just stay forever)
Sponsored Article
Jordan: where history meets adventure
Technology
Brexit will turn Berlin into 'Europe’s startup capital'
Sponsored Article
6 reasons expats use TransferWise to send money
Travel
Six soothing day trips to escape the bustle of Berlin
International
'Germany needs to make UK come to its senses'
Features
Six odd things Germans do in the summer
Features
How two gay dads cut through German red tape to start a family
8,582
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd