The crossover experimental serve "Xiao Long Fiddich" to represent Taiwan at the global finals in Scotland, with eyes on the global winner prize.
Online PR News – 27-September-2018 – Taipei – Head Mixologist Johnny Tsai of TCRC and Yu Lee of Taiwan's premier gelato maker NINAO Gelato have teamed up to craft the experimental serve "Xiao Long Fiddich". The creation had earned the team first place at the 2018 Glenfiddich® World's Most Experimental Bartender Competition Taiwan finals on September 22nd. The Johnny Tsai and Yu Lee duo has won the hearts of judges among 3 groups, and will represent Taiwan to compete at the global final, which will take place on November 4th to 9th in Scotland.
The 2018 Glenfiddich® World's Most Experimental Bartender Competition has been reinvented this year in Taiwan. Fans are invited to taste the experimental serves presented by the top three bars "Bar Pun", "Kashoku", and "TCRC" from August 31st to September 21st and vote online for the most popular creation. Then the Taiwan national final competition took place on September 22nd at Xue Xue Institute in Neihu, which kicked off with Taipei's first ever "Weekend Cocktail Festival" and was unveiled by William Grant & Sons Taiwan's Marketing Director David Lee. The judge panel for this year's Taiwan national final competition includes: Shingo Gokan (Spirit Award's International Bartender of the Year, 2017), Yao-Bang Wang (Director, InFormat Design Curating and InFormat Paper), Ming Kin Lam (Chef, Michelin 1 star restaurant Longtail), Blues To (Editor-In-Chief, GQ Taiwan and GQ Business), and James Chan (Brand Ambassador, Glenfiddich Taiwan). The competition attracted over three hundred passionate fans to participate in one of the most exciting events in Taiwan's mixology industry.
William Grant & Sons Taiwan's Marketing Director David Lee shared, "All three mixologists have demonstrated the spirit of Glenfiddich with their creativity, experiment and specialty. We see the possibilities and different ways of enjoying Glenfiddich whisky and couldn't wait to explore for more." 2017 Spirit Award's International Bartender of the Year- Shingo Gokan shared, "This is my second time as judge of Glenfiddich® World's Most Experimental Bartender Competition, and the scale and creativity are getting bigger and better each year. I have enjoyed the shows today. The cross-over competition has become so iconic and interesting, makes me want to enroll to the next one, too."
"This is my first ever cocktail competition champion award and I m thankful for Glenfiddich. It's a wonderful experience and journey to work with Yu Lee and created something that's appreciated by all judges," Mixologist Johnny from Bar TCRC shared. "We are ready for Scotland and hopefully we can win the world first place with Taiwan's famous Xiao Long Fiddich," Yu Lee, owner of Taiwan's premier gelato maker NINAO Gelato shared.
First Place Experimental Serve- Xiao Long Fiddich
Taiwan's premier gelato maker Yu Lee creates a delicious granita as the xiao long bao's filling with dried longan soaked in Glenfiddich 15 Year Old and truffle honey. The xiao long filling is stuffed with a salty peanut kernel, paying homage to the traditional Tainan custom of eating dried longan with peanuts. To beautifully wrap the xiao long bao in mochi skin, Yu Lee had learned and practiced the intricate wrapping techniques from a famous xiao long bao shop's master.
TCRC Head Mixologist Johnny's experimental serve is concocted by taking the Glenfiddich 15 Year Old and adding red bean water, dark chocolate liqueur, house-made oolong tea ginger syrup, and a drop of soy sauce. The experimental serve is presented in a soy sauce bottle with tri-colored ice cubes made from red bean water, oolong tea, and osmanthus. To enjoy the experimental serve, pour the drink into the dish filled with deep-fried ginger juliennes, then take the "xiao long bao" from the steamer and dip into the "sauce". The drinking experience honors tradition through creativity, bringing together the unlikely combination of gelato, xiao long bao, and mixology.
Second Place Serve- Bubbleholich
Bar Pun's Kero Song creates his "Bubbleholich" experimental serve with a base of Glenfiddich 15 Year Old blended with almond liqueur and old-fashioned black tea; the "bubble" is actually the spherification of a cocktail made from house-made black tea syrup (the delicious result of frying barley, cassia seed, and sugar) mixed with Glenfiddich 15 Year Old. The experimental serve is topped with a milky foam of vanilla and black ginger sugar, and finished with a sprinkle of fried barley for a lovely scent. Instead of using the traditional thick plastic straw (which was invented by the Taiwanese for drinking bubble tea), designer Pili Wu crafted a glass straw with recycled Glenfiddich bottles; the glass straw rests on a stunning and intricate rose-gold deer antler just as a premium cigar would. The presentation embodies the spirit of sustainability and creates endless surprises for the drinker through the process of smelling, drinking, and chewing.
Third Place Experimental and Most Popular Experimental Serve- Path Finder
MT Chen (of Kashoku)'s creation "Path Finder" uses a base of Glenfiddich 15 Year Old, and is mixed with peach liqueur and a house-made liqueur soaked in Taiwan prickly ash, sansho (mountain pepper), and vanilla. Prickly ash and sansho are both indigenous spices favored by Taiwanese Indigenous Peoples. The nose of "Path Finder" is a milky scent from the prickly ash blended with the fruitiness of the peach. The taste is a mixture of vanilla and honey fudge flavor from the Glenfiddich 15 Year Old. The finish is a numbing spicy taste of sansho, which mimics the pain experienced during tattooing.
The presentation of "Path Finder" starts with a "canvas" that is crafted with Glenfiddich 12 Year Old, apple, banana, and sugar. Tattoo artist Chris Liang "tattoos" edible ink made from bitters, water, and charcoal powder into the canvas. The experimental serve includes all of the elements from a classic Old Fashioned: liquor, water, sugar, and bitters, which is a surprise from MT Chen and Chris Liang. Chris Liang further builds a coaster for the experimental serve by tattooing deer and ocean waves onto artificial human skin typically used for practicing tattooing. Path Finder is a seamless marriage of the arts of tattooing and mixology.
2018 Glenfiddich® World's Most Experimental Bartender Competition Taiwan Calendar
â— First round enrollment by July 13, 2018
â— Final 3 bartenders' Bar & Cocktail promotion from August 31- September 21
â— Taiwan Final on September 22 result:
â˜† First Place: "Xiao Long Fiddich" by Tainan Bar TCRC, Johnny
â˜† Second Place: "Bubbleholich" by Taipei Bar Pun, Kero
â˜† Third Place: "Path Finder" by Taipei Bar Kashoku, MT
Please note that the final competition will be using Glenfiddich 12.