Posts Tagged ‘David Rios’

World Class Bartenders: David Rios, The Jigger Cocktail Bar, Spain

Tuesday, October 1st, 2013

At the finals of Diageo Reserve Brand’s World Class Bartender Competition this year, I witnessed some incredible drinks being made.


And some of those drinks were made by


David Rios, The Jigger Cocktail Bar, Spain

(Who, as you know by now, went on to win the competition)

David Rios was first inspired to start in the bartending trade nearly 20 years ago when working at a party for a bar owner where different cocktails were served.  Since that moment, he has served in nearly all aspects of the industry including maitre’d and sommelier of 3 Michelin Star restaurant, Mugaritz, the opening of the Sheraton Hotel in Bilbao and today, owning  Café Kobuk, Kobuk Events and Jigger Bar together with his brother.  Primarily self-taught, David has won a number of awards throughout his career including the cocktail championship of the Bizkaia region, the National Championship of Gin Tonic (By Schweppes) and the International Championship of Gin Tonic (By Fever Tree) amongst others.

David has a classic style with modern touches, focusing on the liquid first and always using an inventive presentation.  When creating cocktails, he loves to use bitter flavours and citrus and is inspired by everything from the sea and fresh grass that surrounds him in Basque country, to previous WORLD CLASS winner Erik Lorincz. David notes: “For me WORLD CLASS is much more than a championship, it is above all training and creating the future of the industry with the upcoming generations. To sum up, it’s a big family. We are in a new era for the bartender where we are getting recognition, and getting close to the recognition of great chefs.”

In the Singleton Sensorium round David created a rich, red-lit atmosphere evoking sunset, presented a model of Scotland, denoting the Highlands, Lowlands, Islands, Speyside whisky producing areas, complete with a miniature river flowing through it, while calming, folk music brought whisky to life. He served Singleton of Dufftown with Pedro Ximenez sherry and Angostura bitters, stirred with ice and strained into a decanter which was then smoked with haya wood chips. He served it in a quaiche with an orange zest spritz. He served it with aromatic and edible botanicals and chocolates on a tartan coaster.

And he’s a darned good guy to hang out with, too!

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Posted in World Class 2013 |