Unique multi-format event announced to ensure safety 


It has been confirmed that Diageo will crown a new World Class Global Bartender of the Year in a unique multi-format event hosted in Madrid, Spain from 5-8th July 2021. The event will be the first since the 2020 event was postponed due to the Coronavirus pandemic, and will be specially created to celebrate global cocktail culture safely and in line with all prevailing government guidelines.


The move to Madrid, from the intended 2020 host city of Sydney, allows the adapted event greater flexibility to work across multiple timezones. Instead, Sydney has been confirmed as the host city for the World Class Bartender of the Year Global Finals 2022!


Pedro Mendonça, Global Reserve Managing Director, said: “2020 has been a difficult year for everybody in the drinks industry, but it’s also been a catalyst for innovation, creativity and community. We were determined to create a safe environment where we could recognise that and give everyone something to look forward to.


“This year’s event will be like no other – we’ve chosen Madrid, not just because it’s one of the truly great destinations for cocktail culture and home to one of the world’s finest cocktail festivals, but also because of the flexibility to work across multiple timezones and create a dynamic event that can adapt to all safety guidelines.


“It’s a genuine privilege for me to confirm the World Class Global Finals will take place next year. Our priority is the safety of our people and our bartenders so we’re delighted to be able to announce this unique multi-format World Class finals to safely celebrate the people taking drinks culture to new heights. Madrid is a fantastic city, full of culture and creativity and home to some of the best bars and bartenders in the world.”


To ensure the safe running of the event, Diageo has designed a number of scenarios for the 2021 World Class Global Final, all with Madrid as the host city. This includes scenarios where bartenders compete in person, if safe and allowed, as well as partially or fully virtual scenarios with bartenders competing from their own country.


Mr Mendonça added: “The final decision on which format we’ll adopt for the World Class Finals 2021 will be decided early in the new year, based on the global situation. Whatever the scenario, we will create something special and we will showcase and celebrate the very best of cocktail culture and the bartenders who make it happen.


“For now, I’m inviting interested bartenders to sign-up and get practising – because next summer one of them will be named Diageo World Class Global Bartender of the Year.”


We’ll welcome bartenders to sign up for the competition soon, in the meantime please sign up to Diageo Bar Academy by visiting https://www.diageobaracademy.com/en_zz/ to receive World Class news and access to World Class Studios.