News / South Africa

Adriaan Roets
2 minute read
26 Jun 2018
6:25 am

KWV competition spurs brandy cocktail innovations

Adriaan Roets

Submitted to rigorous judging procedures, bartenders were tasked to develop a cocktail which captures the tagline 'Brandy reimagined'.

Bartender Maynard Booyzen in the KWV innovative brandy cocktail competition. Picture: Supplied

It’s been an exciting month in the spirits realm – the drinks kind, not the paranormal kind.

Last week, KWV concluded their futurists competition where some of South Africa’s best bartenders competed head to head (or is that bottle to bottle?) to create innovative cocktails with a South African favourite – brandy.

KWV in Paarl, Western Cape, hosted the top five competitors, who had to impress judges with presentation, their bartending skills and, ultimately, an impressive drink.

Maynard Booyzen from Sin+Tax won the battle with a drink made from mostly plant-based ingredients, including walnut fat, beetroot juice, verjuice and cellulose.

The competition is part of KWV’s centenary celebrations.

Twenty competitors from Cape Town, Durban and Johannesburg competed for top spots in two regional bartending competitions, held at Cause and Effect Cocktail and Brandy Bar in Cape Town and Mootee Bar in Johannesburg.

Submitted to rigorous judging procedures, bartenders were tasked to develop a cocktail which captures the tagline “Brandy reimagined”.

Coming in second was Melrick Harrison, who provided stiff competition with his chocolate-inspired cocktail called Before and After.

In a separate leg of the competition, five chefs from Cape Town were asked to develop a gourmet-style canape to pair with the KWV 15.

These gourmands – Timothy Pick from Foxcroft, Gustaaf Boshoff from Stir Food, Zenildo Leite from Smak Deli, celebrity chef on Afternoon Express Clement Pedro and Masterchef judge and consultant chef Pete Goffe-Wood – effectively released brandy from the confines of cheese and chocolate pairings with canapes that showed the liquor’s ability to partner with dishes of complexity.

Pick won, both on taste and presentation, with his “foraging” canape – served on a container with a forest floor inspiration and layered with wild mushroom puree and offset by dried apricots.

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