São Paulo World Class finals select Jacob Martin as global winner

CANADA’S Jacob Martin has been named as Diageo’s 2023 World Class Global Bartender of the Year, topping over 10,000 other elite bartenders who entered this year’s competition.

The finals, held in São Paulo, Brazil, saw Jacob participate in a series of challenges over four days, creating both classic and creative cocktails with Tanqueray No. TEN, Johnnie Walker Black Label, and Ketel One.

Jacob said: “It’s an unbelievable honour to win World Class. Not just because it’s the pinnacle of the industry but also because of the giants I’ve had the privilege of competing with this week.

“Bartending is an amazing community and this week has constantly reminded me of that. We have all pushed each other, learned from each other and fed off the amazing energy from this fantastic city.

“The standard of the competition was out of this world, but right now I’m just looking forward to enjoying a cocktail made by someone else!”

As part of the competition, world-renowned bartenders including Monica Berg, Giacomo Giannotti, and Ago Perrone descended on São Paulo as both judges, and as hosts of special ‘World Class’ experiences in some of the city’s top nightlife venues.

The competition also signalled the beginning of the World Class Cocktail Festival, with bar collaborations across the city. Overall, The World Class Cocktail Festival extends to over 1000 venues across Brazil, offering hundreds of thousands of cocktail lovers a unique treat.

This year’s World Class also saw the inclusion of the Industry Forum, a chance to engage, educate and inspire the bartending community with seminars and panel discussions from World Class judges and guests.

Global Head of Diageo World Class, Marissa Johnston, said: “Following last year’s World Class in Sydney was always going to be a big ask, but the World Class teams around the world, the Brazil team and, of course, our amazing 54 competitors have all stepped up to the plate and knocked it out the park.

“The level of energy on the ground here is incredible and after so many months of planning it’s been such a thrill to see it all come together like this. It’s so exciting to see a city come alive with great drinks and great experiences.

“Jacob has truly taken this competition to the next level – he excelled across the board and the feedback from the judges has been incredible. Jacob is such a deserving winner and I can’t wait to work with him over the next 12 months – he’ll go far.”