When is a bartending competition not just a bartending competition? When it’s designed to bring people together in the spirit of the Mediterranean, celebrating both cocktails and food pairings. With this as its mission, Gin Mare has launched its US heat of the global Med Inspirations cocktail competition, which will send the winner on a trip to Ibiza to compete in the global final. The competition is now in its ninth year after having begun in Europe before expanding internationally and into the US three years ago. This year will see participants from Hong Kong, Singapore, China, Australia, and Mexico with the competition uniting people from around the globe with the aim of sharing the Mediterranean lifestyle.
What Is Med Inspirations?
Med Inspirations is reimagining the global cocktail competition by bringing people together over well-crafted cocktails inspired by the Mediterranean lifestyle. Competitors will share an experience with a group of professionals passionate about innovative gastromixology via Gin Mare’s unique ability to be paired well with foods due to its unique botanicals of Spanish Arbequina olive, Italian sweet basil, Turkish rosemary, and Greek thyme.
How Does Med Inspirations Work?
The global competition opened up to submissions from around the world and is broken into three themed rounds to from regional to national to global. The rounds are:
- Regional: Mare Nostrum Cocktail – The first phase of the competition will have competitors compete with others in their region to make an aperitivo style cocktail using a max of 35 mL (1 ¼ oz) of Gin Mare. The cocktail is meant to embody the Mediterranean palate and lifestyle. In the US, six regional winners will be selected and advance to the national round of the competition. The deadline for submissions is July 1, 2019.
- National: Mediterranean Gin & Tonic – The six regional US winners will be invited to create a unique approach to the iconic drink at the national competition final in Los Angeles on August 5th. The winner of the national competition will move on to the global competition in Ibiza, Spain, along with the winners from Mexico, Hong Kong, Singapore, China, and Australia.
- Global: Gastrobartender Presentation – The global final will take place September 1-5 in Ibiza, Spain where competitors will be challenged to develop a cocktail around a Mediterranean ingredient: Bergamot—a bitter citrus fruit. In addition to competing, participants will be able to experience special workshops and seminars and a trip to the Gin Mare Distillery in Barcelona. The winner will receive a four day Complete and Certified Distilling training via iStill in Amsterdam.