June 2021: After the virtual cocktail festival rounds of India’s most prestigious bartending competition, the country’s best mixologists were evaluated for skill and flair to name Rohan Matmary as the India Winner of Diageo Reserve World Class 2021. Rohan mounted his storytelling skills, understanding of spirits and bartending techniques to earn himself a place in the global finals which will be conducted virtually between 4th – 8th July 2021.
The national finals saw the top 12 contestants battle it out virtually, judged by an esteemed panel which included, Vir Sanghvi, Renowned Television Journalist, Author, Columnist, Shatbhi Basu, Director at Stir Academy of Bartenders, Author & India’s First Female Mixologist, Yangdup Lama, Owner of Sidecar and Kapil Chopra, Chairman of EazyDiner. The innovative infusions in the cocktail recipes and exceptional skill in liquid storytelling convinced the jury that Rohan’s cocktail originations were extraordinarily fit for the global stage this year. It was not only Rohan’s zest that made him win the competition but also his commitment towards the bartending community in India.
Looking forward, Rohan will now begin the global competition with the Ketel One Hive Collective Challenge where he will be working with mindfully sourced ingredients with Ketel One vodka that impact people, businesses, or a cause.
Rohan Matmary, Diageo Reserve World Class 2021 India Winner, says ‘’It is a privilege to be titled as the World Class Bartender of the Year from India and I share the success with my beloved community who supported me throughout the competition. For the Ketel One Hive Collective challenge, I have taken sweet lime as my key ingredient to speak about sustainability in our country. In this task, I am addressing support to the local juice vendors who have been making refreshing beverages and serving it to Covid19 front-liners, patients, crematorium workers and food delivery boys in Delhi.’’
Since India consumes over 54 million tonnes of lime each year, Rohan’s My project Dilliwala is a spin-off on the Ketel One Signature Dutch Mule created in collaboration with local juice vendors, using local chilli infused Ketel One vodka, rescued sweet lime zest and turmeric shrub, ginger beer, limoncello foam, and a street spice dust. This is where sweet lime can reach its optimal use, a more nutrient rich variant of water widely accepted by the people.
Link to the Ketel One Hive Collective Challenge (Difford’s Guide): Zest of Happiness by Rohan Matmary
Talking about the competition, Shweta Jain, Vice President: Luxury Commercial, Key Accounts & South Asian Country Markets at Diageo India, said, “World Class is an exceptional platform that nurtures the bar community and highlights industry excellence. It was incredible to see all the finalists utilize the platform to exude the nuances of diverse flavours of the Diageo Reserve brands topped with balance, innovation, and the craft of cocktail making. I am also delighted to see that the bar fraternity in India is leaning towards sustainability in bartending, curating an inventive cocktail culture for the future.”
Rohan is currently powering through the global finals and is bringing alive the storytelling for fine drinking in India. The five-day global finals will have 55 country champions putting their best foot forward for the competition.
About WORLD CLASS:
WORLD CLASS is on a mission to inspire people to drink better and create unforgettable experiences in the process. Whether at home or in a bar, WORLD CLASS encourages consumers to think and care about fine drinking in the same way they care about fine dining.
WORLD CLASS has supported, trained, and inspired over 300,000 bartenders across the globe over the past ten years, while partnering them with the world’s finest spirits – the Diageo Reserve collection. WORLD CLASS is also the authority on the drinks industry whom consumers look to for the information on the latest drinks, trends, cocktail recipes, and industry insight.
About Diageo Reserve:
Created in 2004, Diageo’s Reserve division focuses on the global luxury opportunity, bringing together brands built on strong heritage, craftsmanship and authenticity. This luxury portfolio consists of Johnnie Walker Blue Label, Ciroc, Don Julio, Tanqueray No. TEN, Ketel One vodka, Zacapa, Bulleit and a fine collection of Single Malts. The Reserve portfolio accounts for 16% of Diageo’s total sales and has grown by 7% this financial year.
Diageo is a global leader in beverage alcohol with an outstanding collection of brands including Johnnie Walker, Crown Royal, J&B, Buchanan’s and Windsor whiskies, Smirnoff and Ciroc vodkas, Captain Morgan, Baileys, Don Julio, Tanqueray and Guinness.
Diageo is listed on both the London Stock Exchange (LSE) and the New York Stock Exchange (DEO) and our products are sold in more than 180 countries around the world. For more information about Diageo, our people, our brands and performance, visit us at www.diageo.com. Visit Diageo’s global responsible drinking resource, www.DRINKIQ.com for information, initiatives, and ways to share best practice.