The final of the biggest bartending competition in Warsaw is history

The final of the biggest bartending competition in Warsaw is history. Meet the winners of the Food Town Flair Challenge!

Last night we met the finalists of the most spectacular bartending shows in the world!

The World Flair Association Grand Slam returned to Poland after 12 years to present a spectacular show on Tuesday and Wednesday, June 27 and 28, in the Food Town at the Norblin Factory. On the Gimlet Live stage, bottles, shakers and other accessories took to the air and created an unforgettable show.

The Food Town Flair Challenge was the third – after the competitions in Helsinki and Zante (Greece) – this year’s edition of the WFA Grand Slam series, and 50 outstanding bartenders from around the world, including
as many as 20 from Poland, competed for the victory in the Food Town Flair Challenge! Emotions were running high. On the first day of the competition, during the eliminations, 10 finalists were selected, who fought for the title of winner yesterday evening (28/06/2023). In the grand final, as many as 3 talented Italians had a chance to present their skills – Michael Moreni, Roman Zapata, Ciro Marino, two Poles – Filip Ciszowski and Kacper Smarz – Polish favorite in the competition, last year’s IBA World Champion. The other five are Yonny Aguilar from Peru, Deniss Trifanovs from Latvia, Ping-Hshang Yu (Eric Yu) from Taiwan, Stepan Simanek from the Czech Republic and Kyrylo Rudak from Ukraine.

The performances of the participants were evaluated by an international jury composed of authorized judges of the World Flair Association (WFA): Luca Valentin from Romania – three-time flair world champion, Andy
Collinson from Great Britain – founder of WFA and owner of Ace Bar Events agency; Neil Garner from Great Britain, who is a member of the legendary group Bar Wizards, bar operator and former top flair player.
In addition, in the Wednesday final, they were joined by three tasting judges: Patryk Kowalski – Dewar’s Brand Ambassador, Artur Wawrzyszczak – SPB Vice President and Ewelina Figiel – Cocktail Art Manager of the Bar Management Company group.

The victory went to Roman Zapata, who received a prize of 4,000 euros! The second place was awarded to Deniss Trifanovs from Latvia – the current leader of the general WFA GRAND SLAM classification, and the
third bartender on the podium was Michael Moreni from Italy. The Best Cocktail award went to Eric Yu, and the best Polish bartender turned out to be Kacper Smarz, who will represent our country at the annual finals of the International Bartenders Federation (IBA) in Rome between November 28 and December 2. The best female bartender was Elizaveta Soboleva from Ukraine.

The Food Town Flair Challenge was organized by Tomasz Małek – an international WFA judge, 4-time Roadhouse World Final Champion, WFA Gold Level and 4-time winner of the international WFA Grand Slam flair league. Tomasz Małek is also the Beverage Director of the Bar Management Company group, which runs bars in Food Town, Amar Beirut, MOXO and Piano Bar and Bibi’s, as well as in the Stacja Food Hall in Gdańsk.
The Food Town event was hosted by Adam Grądziel – Cocktail Art Manager of the Bar Management Company group and Marek Posłuszny – WFA Gold Level and 4 times World Champion flair bartender.

Competition was sponsored by: Dewar’s whisky, Bacardi rum and Kinley Tonic Water.