NEW YORK, April 4, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Combine two parts wisdom and one part charm, add a dash of hospitality and garnish with a friendly smile – this is the recipe for a great bartender. Beginning April 4, 2012, Diageo will honor bartenders and mixologists by debuting the renowned Diageo World Class program in the United States in conjunction with the United States Bartenders' Guild (USBG).This unique, international cocktail training program will champion the art of the crafted cocktail and name one talented bartender the first-ever World Class U.S. Ambassador, who will represent the United States at the Diageo World Class Global Final in Brazil this coming July.
"Diageo has always been committed to the professional and educational development of bartenders and mixologists around the globe," said Mark Schulte, Diageo's Senior Vice President of Customer Marketing. "We are extremely excited to strengthen this long lasting relationship with the trade by working with the USBG to extend the Diageo World Class program to the United States."
To participate, hopeful bartenders and mixologists will register at www.DiageoWorldClassUSA.com and complete three online educational modules enriching their skills and knowledge of the culinary art of the cocktail. The modules will launch on April 4, 2012, focusing on the history of classic and innovative recipes experienced both behind and in front of the bar. These educational studies will cover topics such as Classics with a Twist, Asian Influences and Gentlemen's and Ladies' Drinks. Participants will also use their newly acquired knowledge to submit an original cocktail recipe and instructional video featuring premium spirits from the Diageo Reserve portfolio, including Ketel One® Vodka, Ciroc® Vodka, Tanqueray® No. TEN Gin, Be World Class. Always Mix Responsibly. © 2012 Diageo, Norwalk, CT. Zacapa® Rum, Bulleit® Bourbon, Johnnie Walker® Blended Scotch Whisky and Tequila Don Julio®.
To ignite the spirit of program, the USBG, along with World Class U.S. will host a series of six events across the country. From April 23 through May 15, 2012, renowned mixologist and Tanqueray Global Ambassador Angus Winchester will travel to Houston, Miami, Chicago, Boston, Seattle and New York to recruit bartenders and inform potential participants about the international program. Additionally, Winchester will use his industry expertise to judge participants' cocktail recipe submissions and select 20 mixologists to compete in the program's final challenge.
Following Winchester's selections, World Class U.S. will culminate with a final event on June 19, 2012, in New York City. In conjunction with the USBG, the event will consist of the chosen finalists, who will partake in four cocktail challenges administered and judged by leading cocktail luminaries from across the industry. Participating luminaries include leading bar professional Tony Abou-Ganim, top mixologist and author Jim Meehan, cocktail and culinary expert Steve Olson and leading cocktail personality Julie Reiner, who will judge contenders based on the knowledge they attained from the Diageo World Class educational modules. Additionally, cocktail legends and Global World Class gurus Dale DeGroff and Gary Regan will award the winner with the prestigious honor and opportunity to hold the title of World Class U.S. Ambassador.
"Diageo World Class is the most prestigious cocktail program in the world, and I'm privileged to help initiate the effort in the United States," said Angus Winchester. "It's going to be a captivating experience watching the nation's top mixologists honor the culture of cocktails through the knowledge, skills and appreciation they've acquired throughout the program. We just ask that everyone celebrate their craft responsibly."
In addition to being skilled behind the bar, a World Class bartender gives back to others. To instill this value, Diageo World Class U.S. will make a donation to The Museum of the American Cocktail, which seeks to advance the mixology profession and increase consumer knowledge.
Be World Class. Always Mix Responsibly. © 2012 Diageo, Norwalk, CT.
For additional information and to register for the program, visit www.DiageoWorldClassUSA.com. Join the conversation by following @WorldClassUS on Twitter, use the hashtag #CocktailChallenge and visit www.facebook.com/diageoworldclassus.
Diageo is the world's leading premium drinks business with an outstanding collection of beverage alcohol brands across spirits, beer and wine. These brands include Johnnie Walker, Crown Royal, JεB, Windsor, Buchanan's and Bushmills whiskies, Smirnoff, Ciroc and Ketel One vodkas, Baileys, Captain Morgan, Jose Cuervo, Tanqueray and Guinness.
Diageo is a global company, with its products sold in more than 180 countries around the world. The company is listed on both the New York Stock Exchange (DEO) and the London Stock Exchange (DGE). For more information about Diageo, its people, brands, and performance, visit us at Diageo.com. For our global resource that promotes responsible drinking through the sharing of best practice tools, information and initiatives, visit DRINKiQ.com.
Celebrating life, every day, everywhere.
The USBG is the largest network of professional bartenders in the U.S. who come together to share the craft of mixology. With over 60 years of presence in the United States and International coverage in affiliation with the International Bartender's Association (IBA) in over 50 countries, the United States Bartenders' Guild is setting the standard for the profession throughout the country. With the resurgence and increasing popularity of the cocktail, there is a high demand for creative and professional bartenders. As an industry leader, the USBG is responsible for educating its members about current trends while encouraging them to start new ones. For more information, visit www.usbg.org.
About the Museum of the American Cocktail
Throughout its two-century-old history, the cocktail has influenced music, theater, art, film, and politics around the world. The Museum of the American Cocktail is a nonprofit organization that celebrates this true American cultural icon. Founded by Dale DeGroff, and several of the world's most passionate cocktail authorities and historians, the Museum of the American Cocktail seeks to advance the profession and increase consumer knowledge of mixology while stressing the importance of responsible drinking. Our mission is to create a self-sustaining museum and tourist attraction that celebrates and preserves a rich aspect of American culture, while providing educational resources for professionals and the public in the fine art of crafting the cocktail through a series of mixology seminars conducted by the world's foremost authorities on cocktail history and American cocktails. We also aim to broaden career opportunities in the spirits industry and encourage more participation from women and members of under-represented groups in the field.