Adrián Michalčík wins Diageo World Class 2022
Norwegian bartender Adrián Michalčík has been named the Diageo World Class Global Bartender of the Year 2022.
The final took place in Sydney, Australia, yesterday (15 September) after being held in a digital format for the first time last year due to Covid-19 restrictions.
The competition saw bartenders from 50 countries take part, each competing in a series of challenges designed to test their cocktail skills, knowledge and creativity.
The challenges included asking each bartender to design a unique cordial using surplus fresh produce to make a highball using Johnnie Walker, and stirring the ‘perfect’ Tanqueray No Ten Martini.
Each of the finalists were encouraged to push the boundaries of their craft and champion ‘drinking better not more’.
Upon winning, Michalčík said: “Wow, I can’t believe I’ve just won the biggest bartender competition in the world! The last few years have been incredibly tough for me and for our industry.
“Just to get the chance to compete here, in real life, against some truly amazing bartenders, feels like the start of a new chapter. There were moments I wasn’t sure I’d make the next round let alone win the title.”
The competition judges included Ago Perrone, Monica Berg and Ryan Chetiyawardana, each of whom ‘surprised’ Sydney residents with guest appearances in some of the city’s top bars and restaurants as part of the World Class Cocktail Festival.
Marissa Johnston, global head of Diageo World Class, said: “This year’s competition has truly blown me away. Our finalists have taken their craft to the next level and Adrián stood out as a giant among giants.
“He is a very worthy winner and I’m really looking forward to working with him in the year ahead.”
The festival featured a series of events and collaborations at restaurants and bars around the Sydney Opera House.
The ‘godfather of food trucks’, Roy Choi, hosted the Don Julio Food Truck Fiesta, while bartender and entrepreneur Berg brought a fresh perspective on single malts with The Singleton to Sydney’s, Shell House.