The winner of Bacardi Legacy 2017 is Ran Van Ongevalle from Knokke Heist in Belgium.
His winning cocktail triumphed over eight other competitors in the annual global contest’s grand final held this month in Berlin, Germany.
Ran, who works at The Pharmacy bar, won the competition with Clarita — a stirred cocktail with Bacardi Gran Reserva 8 Años rum and Amontillado sherry combined with a little crème de cacao, absinthe and saline solution — which beat a field of original drinks created by bartenders from 38 countries.
Ran’s drink was inspired by “heritage, family and tradition,” he said, a fitting sentiment given that Ran has followed in his father’s footsteps not only as a bartender, but also as a Bacardi Legacy competitor.
“This is just too much to take in,” said Ran. “It feels like I am honouring my family with this win. What an amazing week we have all had together; winning the final now is difficult to take in. This trophy is pretty heavy to hold, but I’m not putting it down!”
Now in its ninth year, the Bacardi Legacy Global Cocktail Competition accepted thousands of entries during the year-long national rounds.
As Ran’s prize, Bacardi will provide year-long support to further his career as a bartender.
Each of the 38 finalists spent months perfecting and promoting their ‘Legacy’ cocktail, featuring either Bacardi Carta Blanca rum, Bacardi Carta Oro rum or, for the first time this year, Bacardi Gran Reserva 8 Años rum.
The finalists experienced a range of educational workshops, delivered by leaders of the drinks industry, each devised to hone their skills before they presented their own original interpretation of a modern Bacardi Legacy cocktail in the competition. Eight competitors were selected to go through to the grand final and present their drink in front of an audience of invited guests and a judging panel representing some of the most influential names in the international bartending and spirits community.