On a balmy evening in front of an august audience, Akshay Kottary, head trainer at Martiny Mixology from Mangalore, Karnataka beat finalists from all over the country to bag the coveted title of the prestigious MONIN Cup 2022 India.
The lineup of the 2022 India round was stacked with talented and experienced bartenders from all over the country including Hemali Bendre from Bombay Canteen and Akshay Waghmare from Pass Code Only who were the runners up.
For the unversed, Monin Cup is an international bartending competition conducted across 50+ countries to discover the most skilled mixologists. Kottary will now compete on a global level with finalists from different countries at the International Grand Finale for the prestigious MONIN Cup in France towards the end of the year.
The finalists from all corners of the country were selected via regional competitions conducted in Kolkata, Bangalore, Mumbai, and Delhi over the past few weeks.
Germain Araud, Managing Director, Monin India Pvt Ltd, said, “MONIN Cup competitions are a great platform for the budding bartenders in the country to come forward and show their exceptional talent to the world. We aimed to provide a professional stage for them to thrive and learn new skills through this contest. There was an overwhelming response from all parts of the country and the participants outshined themselves with recipes that were performed with utmost artistry. The opportunity to represent their home country is a great feat to achieve and we saw a tough competition at the finals as well.”
The event was judged by Yangdup Lama, consultant beverage trainer and co-owner of Sidecar bar, Sahith Sethuraman, Co-founder, Greenhouse by Bacardi, Karina Aggarwal, founder and director, Gigglewater Beverage Concepts Pvt. Ltd and Andrea Fidora, MONIN’s Regional Sales Director, Dubai. The jury members evaluated all aspects such as presentation, efficiency, skills, appearance, aroma, taste, and respect for the theme.
In congruence to this year’s theme, Sharing Memorable Moments, the participants used their skill, passion and ingenuity and created cocktails each one with an emotional backstory attached to them which deeply resonated with the audience. Participants were expected to prepare mocktails with a minimum of six ingredients including a MONIN syrup in the first round. In the second round, mixologists were in for a surprise as they had to prepare a cocktail with a flavour that they were supposed to pick from a draw of lots.
Kottary said, “It is a dream come true for me to win this prestigious title and subsequently represent my country in the upcoming event in France. To meet the best mixologists from around the country and to be guided by the stalwarts of the industry was indeed a surreal experience. I am thankful to MONIN India for this opportunity and the past weeks have been the best days of my life.”