A global search has been launched across France, the US, UK, Germany, Spain and Canada for the best gin bartender in the world.
Dubbed the G'Vine Gin Connoisseur Program or GCP and based out of France, the six-month competition will pit bartenders around the world in a series of challenges that test their knowledge and mixology skills of the juniper berry-based spirit.
Competitors must complete online tests in addition to nosings and tastings of 10 gin samples, and create a signature gin cocktail inspired by this year's theme -- French Classics.
Last year's winner, Gegam Kazarian from Spain, beat out the competition with his cocktail ‘Coupage Floral,' made with pink grapefruit juice, lime juice, cardamom and ginger syrup and a blueberry reduction. The competition is sponsored by G'Vine Floraison, a French gin manufacturer.
The highest-scoring 15 finalists around the world will be sent to Cognac, France where G'Vine is made, to vie for the title and win a pot of $3,000, as well as trips to Tales of the Cocktail in New Orleans, a premiere cocktail festival, and Bar Convent Berlin 2012.
The competition is open to bartenders anywhere around the world.
Gin was also the focus of Tales of the Cocktail last year, where mixologists were challenged to reinvent an old New Orleans classic, the gin fizz, traditionally made with gin, lemon juice, sugar and carbonated water.
The winning recipe from Atlanta involved Old Raj gin, lime juice, heavy cream, cardamom tincture, Fee Brothers Jasmine water and Fever Tree Lemon Tonic.
The final gin throw-down for the GCP takes place in June. For cocktail recipes from finalists last year, visit their Club des Connoisseurs at
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