Top tips for cocktail competition success

30th May, 2017 by Annie Hayes

While crafting a delicious cocktail is second nature for bartending professionals, presenting the creation to a judging panel requires an altogether different set of skills – as actor and cabaret performer Reuben Kaye attested at Bacardi Legacy 2017.

Actor and cabaret performer Reuben Kaye prepares for his performance workshop

At the Bacardi Legacy Cocktail Competition 2017, this year hosted in Berlin, Germany, Kaye took to the stage to impart words of wisdom to competitors over an entertaining evening seminar spanning preparation, nerves, and audience psychology.

Kaye addressed 38 bartenders hailing from countries across the globe as they readied to take to the stage for the semi-finals.

“Stage fright is your body perceiving the activity of going on-stage as a threat,” says Kaye. “It’s your body going into flight or flight syndrome, which is a flooding of adrenaline into your body. That is why you shake, that is why you stutter – muscles are being flooding with adrenaline that they have no way or absorbing and processing. Your digestive system also shuts down in your flight or flight system to devote all of its energy to the task at hand.

“You’ll find your palms and your feet tend to get cold and sweaty, and that’s because your body is drawing blood out of your extremities and pushing it all into the core of your body to protect your internal organs – because it thinks you’re about to fight a woolly mammoth, not make two drinks in under seven minutes.”

His tips were clearly noted by Ran Van Ongevalle from Belgium, who went on to triumph in the global final just days later.

Click through the following pages to discover Kaye’s top tips for stage success at a cocktail competition. 

To view a picture round-up of the week’s events, click here.

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