Miroslav Kljajic

Carnival Cruise Line Bartender Wins Bacardí Legacy Cruise Competition | Cruise News – March 4, 2016

Carnival Cruise Line Bartender Wins Bacardí Legacy Cruise Competition

Cruise News – March 4, 2016

Carnival Cruise Line bartender Miroslav Kljajic, who’ll you’ll normally find serving cocktails to cruise guests aboard Carnival Glory, has been crowned winner of the 2016 BACARDÍ® Legacy Cruise Competition Bartender of the Year and now goes forward to compete in the global finals.

The BACARDÍ Legacy Cocktail Competition was founded in 2008 to challenge the great bartenders of the modern era to create a cocktail that will stand the test of time, become their signature drink, and be remembered long into the future. The competition receives thousands of entries, challenging participants to create the next generation of classic cocktails that are defined by their balance, flavor, quality of ingredients, aesthetic appeal, their enduring popularity, and the story behind them.

This year’s competition was judged by William Ramos, senior brand master for BACARDÍ; Adrian Biggs, senior portfolio ambassador for Bacardi; and John Lermayer, owner of Sweet Liberty cocktail bar in Miami Beach and 2010 BACARDÍ Legacy U.S. winner.

At the cruise final showdown, which was held in Miami on February 25, Miro won over the judges with his original Elixir Fizz cocktail creation, which features BACARDÍ Carta Blanca rum, tawny port wine, homemade vanilla & thyme syrup, MARTINI® prosecco, cherry bitter spray, and fresh sprigs of thyme.

“Miro’s winning cocktail perfectly captures the spirit of BACARDÍ,” said Zachary Sulkes, regional manager, Bacardi Travel Retail Americas. “His confidence and professional presentation really impressed the judges and he is clearly a fantastic example of how bartending standards in the cruise industry are fast becoming ever more professional with talent like Miro, whose total commitment to his craft, knowledge, and skills are an absolute pleasure to witness in action.”

“My goal is to keep learning and developing my specialism in this exciting profession,” said Miro. “One day I plan to open my own bar somewhere in the world. I haven’t decided where yet, but having a great position with Carnival that enables me to travel so much is the best way to consider all my options. It’s a tremendous honor to be included as part of this important professional showcase.”

This year’s other finalists were Bailon Pasamba of Holland America Line and Andres Poljakov of Tallink Group. Miro received a $4,000 cash prize and an all-expenses-paid trip to the BACARDÍ Legacy Global Cocktail Competition in San Francisco (April 20–25, 2016) where he’ll compete against 35 other professional bartenders from across the globe for the ultimate title.

Photo: Bacardi

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