Beluga Cocktails Masters India 2018 Finale Held at Courtyard by Marriott

Entertainment | October 30, 2018 | News

Courtyard by Marriott

Sula Selections, the import arm of Sula Vineyards and one of India’s leading wine and spirits importers launched their trail-blazing new IP in August 2018, ‘Beluga Cocktail Masters India 2018’ in association with Beluga Noble Russian Vodka, the world’s most popular Russian vodka. Sula Selections & Beluga announced Adamo Balsamo representing CinCin as the title winner of the Beluga Cocktail Master India 2018. As part of the prize, Adamo Balsamo won a trip to Moscow.

After a nationwide search, the top ten finalists were selected for the grand finale. The finalists selected showcased their immense talent through the initial rounds; they excelled at marketing and sales across digital platforms as well, earning them each a place at the prestigious finale. The finale commenced with the introduction to the finalists and a fascinating black-tie cocktail competition whereby the finalists prepared a unique Beluga cocktail. 5 mixologists were selected for the final challenge which was an enigma. A mysterious black box was presented to each contestant which included various unique ingredients like Dry Vermouth, Balsamic Vinegar, Rosso Vermouth, Star Anise, Rosemary, Apricot Marmelade which made the task even more challenging in order to bring out the best in them. Creativity and Improvisation were tested and the judges then moved on to select their winner. 

In a bid to provide bartenders with an international experience, Sula commenced its three-city Masterclass in Mumbai, Delhi and Bangalore conducted by Agostino Schiavo, the head bartender at the legendary Arts Club in London. Over 200 bartenders across the country aligned themselves to put together interesting cocktails made with Beluga and learn global tricks about bartending. The bartenders were given one week to battle it out as they created a unique cocktail using Beluga Vodka and recorded a video showcasing it. From over 50 bartenders per city, 20 were selected to promote Beluga in a personal capacity and using their social media platforms, from which the top ten cocktails were selected for the final round. The ten finalists made their way to Mumbai for the Grand Finale 25th October and compete to be the Beluga Cocktail Masters India, 2018.

On winning the competition, Adamo Balsamo said ‘It had been six months in India and I wanted to make an impact. My friend from Yautacha insisted that I participate in this competition, upon his advice I started preparing for the competition a month in advance. I was very happy to attend the master class where I received my first fish badge, that's when my interest begins to develop more in the competition. When the black box arrived before me, I thought that was the end of the journey for me. Coconut milk was an ingredient that changed the game for me, I always wanted to make a drink with coconut milk. For my bar and for my team at CinCin, I am very happy! God bless everyone who wished me well. I never thought of winning this prestigious competition, for me participating was very important’

The judges’ panel comprised of Shatbhi Basu, India’s first ever female bartender. What was assigned to her as an additional job while working at a restaurant, became a skill of hers the entire country fell in love with.  Shatbhi apart from being a bartender is a beverage consultant, an author, head of a bartending academy and American Whiskey Ambassador for India! Rojita Tiwari who is an independent writer, trainer, and consultant in the fields of wine & spirits, travel & hospitality was another judge. She is a WSET Level 3 certified professional and listed twice (2013 and 2015) as one of the Top ten women of wine in India by the Indian Wine Academy and possesses over 14 years of work experience. The third and final judge on the panel was Pankaj Kamble. Pankaj holds a Guinness World Record Title in Flair Bartending; he is also a beverage consultant, a LIMCA Book Record Holder and has represented India at various competitions, Pankaj has also appeared in TV shows and is famous amongst Bollywood celebrities.  

Ken Pritchard, Senior Vice President, Marketing and International Sales, Sula Vineyards said, “We are delighted to have hosted Beluga Masters India 2018. The finale witnessed the crème de la crème of India’s mixologists who competed to win the title of "Beluga Cocktail Master India 2018! Beluga vodka represents the pinnacle of the vodka maker’s craft and our finale will showcase the pinnacle of Indian mixology - what a great partnership! The 10 finalists had qualified against tremendous competition from around 200 mixologists who attended the Masterclasses in Mumbai, Delhi and Bangalore. I’d like to congratulate *Adamo Bilsao *from CinCin for winning the competition.  We were delighted to be back at Courtyard by Marriott and we are very grateful to them for hosting us. We look forward to hosting similar competitions and such experiences in the future”

Adamo Balsamo from CinCin wins the first Beluga Cocktail Masters India 2018.

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