The World Flair Association Grand Slam is returning to Poland after 12 years. A spectacular show will take place in the Food Town at Norblin Factory on 27 and 28 June. Gimlet Live stage of Poland’s biggest food hall will host the world’s largest flair competition, the most spectacular bartending show. The top bartenders will toss bottles, shakers and other accessories in the air to the rhythm of the music in an unforgettable show. Admission to the event is free of charge and everyone may enjoy the bartending master show.
It is going to be a very special two days at Food Town hosting the next edition of the WFA Grand Slam on 27 and 28 June (Tuesday and Wednesday). Fifty top bartenders from all over the world, including 20 from Poland, will compete to win the Food Town Flair Challenge. Confirmed participants include Roman Zapata from Argentina, Eric Yu from Taiwan, Denis Trifanovs from Latvia, Michael Moreni from Italy, as well as contestants from Mexico and the United States. The Polish favourite is last year’s IBA (International Bartenders Association) World Champion Kacper Smarz.
The Food Town Flair Challenge brings not only excitement but also attractive prizes. The pot to be shared by the top 10 is €10,000. The winner of the competition will get €4,000. Special prizes will be awarded in the categories: Best Cocktail, Best Female, and Best Polish Bartender. The latter will represent Poland at the annual finals of the International Bartenders Association (IBA). The contest will take place in Rome from 28 November to 2 December. It is one of the most important events in the bartending industry.
The popularity of the flair, the spectacular art of bartending, can be traced back to the 1988 movie “Cocktail”, where Tom Cruise played a young bartender, a master of colourful drinks. Considering the list of participants in the Warsaw competition, the level of mastery will definitely equal that of the Hollywood star. The competition in Food Town’s Gimlet room will begin on Tuesday, 27 June, at 2 p.m., with each of the 50 participants showcasing their skills in a unique show. After the competition, a panel of three judges will select 10 finalists. The final showdown in the Food Town Flair Challenge will begin on Wednesday, 28 June at 8.30 p.m.
The participants’ performance will be judged by an international jury of World Flair Association (WFA) official judges. Luca Valentin from Romania is a three-time flair world champion and one of the best flair competitors ever. Andy Collinson from the UK is the founder of the WFA and owner of the agency Ace Bar Events. Neil Garner from the UK is a member of the legendary Bar Wizards, a bar operator and former top flair competitor. They will be joined on the panel in Wednesday’s finals by three tasting judges: Patryk Kowalski – Dewar’s Brand Ambassador; Artur Wawrzyszczak – SPB Vice President; and Ewelina Figiel – Cocktail Art Manager of Bar Management Company group which operates bars at Norblin Factory in Food Town, Amar Beirut, MOXO, Piano Bar, Bibi’s, as well as the Food Hall Station in Gdańsk.
The Food Town Flair Challenge is organised by international WFA judge and trainer Tomasz Małek, winner of 66 bartending competitions around the world, four-time Roadhouse World Final Champion and four-time winner of the international flair league WFA Grand Slam. Tomasz Małek is also the Beverage Director of the Bar Management Company group which operates bars at the Norblin Factory in Food Town, Amar Beirut, MOXO, the Piano Bar, Bibi’s, as well as the Food Hall Station in Gdańsk.
“We are delighted that the WFA Grand Slam is returning to Poland after so many years and that it will be held in Food Town at Norblin Factory. You may not know that history has come full circle as one of the first Polish cocktail shakers was made between 1912 and 1915 at the Żelazna Street works, which today houses Norblin Factory. Excitement, attractions, competitions await our guests. Each day will end with a crazy music and food after-party. It will be a real feast for the senses and the body. Admission is free and everyone is welcome,”said Tomasz Małek, the organiser of the Food Town Challenge.
The Warsaw event in Food Town will be hosted by Adam Grądziel – Cocktail Art Manager of the Bar Management Company group and Marek Posłuszny – one of the world’s top flair bartenders. Adam Grądziel is the author of the book Święty z Bostonem, finalist and winner of many prestigious cocktail competitions. Marek Posłuszny is a four-time flair World Champion (three times IBA, once Roadhouse World Final), owner of the Flair Factory bartending agency, judge, coach, and public speaker.
The Food Town Flair Challenge is the third in this year’s WFA Grand Slam series after competitions in Helsinki and Zante, Greece. The current leader of the bartending contest is Dennis Trifanovs from Latvia, followed by Italy’s Michael Moreni and, in third place, Roman Zapata of Argentina. All three contestants will now meet in Warsaw.