New Zealand’s national bartender competition has made a comeback after a thirteen-year hiatus.
The country’s best bartenders have had the chance to show off their skills at the National Bartender of the Year competition in Wellington today.
Competitors travelled from as far as Auckland and Wanaka in order to take part in the fun, and to prove making drinks isn’t just an art, but a science too.
“Everytime you talk to someone about being a bartender they're like ‘I’m a bartender too’, pouring beers at home isn't really the same thing,” says Riki Carter, Bartender of the Year organiser.
Bartenders were not only challenged creatively, but they also had to go through a blind taste test and a two and a half hour written exam.
One competitor, Dan Felsing, said he didn't want to talk about the exam as it was "really hard".
There was also a food pairing round, and a Covid-19 themed element which saw competitors mixing at home with limited equipment on hand.
The winner of this year’s competition is set to be announced later on this evening.