The ABSOLUT Vodka Mixology Challenge is the brainchild of Brian Owango, MD of Aqueous Concept and the ABSOLUT Vodka Brand Ambassador. ‘Our desire is for the talented set to respect the old, embrace the new and put Kenya on the discerning drinkers map’ he emphasized.
Seeking to unearth the City’s top professional mixologist, the Absolut Vodka mixology competition will be about rewarding creativity; a dominant ABSOLUT Vodka flavour, an interesting name and a story behind each cocktail created.
Wanjiru Njenga, Marketing Manager Pernod Ricard noted: “The challenge is all about creativity; a dynamic personality, an eye for the obscure, a finger on the pulse of trends and ultimately bringing ABSOLUT Vodka to life.
Tuesday, 22nd October 2013 saw the commencement of the mixology competition at Sarabi Pool & Supper Club, Sankara Nairobi. The competition was kicked off by the city’s top professional mixologists from leading hotels in the first heat.
Key Nairobi hotels that were represented include; Emmanuel Babu and Bernard Ambeyi from Tribe, Samuel Tochoh from Crowne Plaza, Humphrey Kinyanjui and Edward Bunde from Sankara Nairobi and Robert Nyaga from The Fairmont Norfolk.
The panel of judges comprised of lifestyle enthusiasts, Vodka drinkers and personalities of note.
Robert (aka Roberto) Nyaga from The Fairmont Norfolk emerged the winner, with his signature hot and spicy cocktail, ABSOLUT Konfusion inspired by ABSOLUT Peppar.
Edward Bunde from Sankara Nairobi took second place with his Farmers Smoking Punch cocktail. His cocktail and its name ‘farmers’ was inspired by nature and organic ingredients.
Emmanuel Babu from the Tribe Hotel took third place with his cocktail Scarlet, inspired by a beautiful woman of the same name.
Winners received their ABSOLUT prizes from Tom Njeru, Pernod Ricard Promotions and Events Manager and secure their spot in the Grand Final where they will battle it out with other winners for the chance to win a cash prize of KSH 100,000 as well as a fully paid trip to train with the best at the ABSOLUT Vodka headquarters in Sweden.
The next heats are scheduled to take place:
- Ngong Road Heat: 5th November 2013, Sierra Brasserie
- Westlands and Town Heat: 19th November 2013, Galileo Lounge
The professional mixologists are expected to get through to the judges hearts and minds by showcasing their prowess in smoothness of preparation, the workspace, smell and taste, and mixology consistency in three minutes. The aim is to not only get people to understand the level of skill involved but also to show them the ease with which ABSOLUT Vodka can be personalized to suit each person’s taste.
During last year’s inaugural competition, Yvonne Wairimu from Mercury Lounge charmed the judges with her signature cocktail “Hidden Secrets” crafted from ABSOLUT Citron, three basil leaves, ginger syrup, lime juice, amaretto, disarrono, and ginger ale.