Recognising the craft of the bartender, through its brief four-year history, World Class has become a permanent fixture in the diary for mixology heavyweights of the luxury drinks industry. What began as a bartending training programme is now an internationally recognised annual event that elevates the fine drinking category and is changing the face of cocktail culture by creating luxury experiences for consumers.
The World Class Global Final is replete with an exploration of the world’s best bars, high-profile evening events and is the industry authority behind setting mixology’s next biggest trends. A star-studded roster of bartenders from the four corners of the globe will make this year the biggest and most impressive yet - with more than 10,000 contenders battling their way to the prestigious Global Final to win the acclaimed title of Diageo Reserve World Class Bartender of the Year.
Rudy Paoli, Managing Director Diageo Reserve, said, “World Class is the only global event that recognises the craft of the bartender, discovers new talent and previews the latest fine drinking trends. Given the continuous growth of the luxury sector driven by emerging markets, Brazil was a clear choice for the 2012 Global Final. In 2011, consumption of personal luxury goods in Brazil was estimated at €2.3 billion making Diageo Reserve well placed to meet the increasing demand for fine drinking experiences and opportunity for luxury spirits.1 With an innovative arts and culture scene, Rio de Janeiro will provide a stunning backdrop for our largest showcase yet.”
Rio de Janeiro was chosen as the first host city in the Americas for World Class with previous years’ destinations including spectacular locations such as London, Athens and New Delhi. The Global Final will be the first of other international marquee events taking place in Brazil including the 2014 FIFA World Cup and the 2016 Brazil Olympics.
“We are very excited to host the World Class Global Final 2012 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil,” said Otto Von Sothen, Managing Director, Diageo Paraguay, Uruguay and Brazil. “With an established cocktail culture, the country is home to many sensational and exciting bartenders and bars that challenge existing cocktail norms and evolve classic recipes with a local twist. From stunning beaches to buzzing streets, Rio de Janeiro is one of the world’s most vibrant and enigmatic cities. Boasting colourful tradition and huge worldwide appeal, its spectacular beauty and kaleidoscopic culture make it the perfect location for World Class 2012.”