The world’s largest bartending competition, Diageo Reserve World Class has put some of the world’s best venues on the map. It was the catalyst for bars including This Must Be The Place, and a career cornerstone for Tim Philips (Black Pearl alumni, global World Class winner in 2012 and owner of Sydney's Bulletin Place).

Open to bartenders globally, Australia's national World Class winner will take home a global trip to 80 of the world's best bars, from the world-famous Aviary in Chicago to Bon Vivant in Edinburgh. Until now, the competition has been so focused on pushing industry boundaries that the World Class name hasn’t reached beyond the bar. But things are changing.

“Bartending in not just a side-job, trade or in-between job, anymore. It’s a profession,” says Philips. “High-end cocktails are being regarded in the same esteem as fine-dining.” 

Just as our interest in food has grown, so too has our desire to learn more about our drinking scene. We want more than experiences, we want to know the whos, wheres and hows.

So World Class is providing it. For the first time ever, the skills, techniques and recipes behind the world’s best bars and bartenders are being shared with us, the drinking public.

Broadsheet is partnering with World Class to bring you the very best of bartending culture. In our nightlife section you’ll find a dedicated World Class Drinking hub. Consider it your guide for creative recipes, tips and tricks as well as news and events featuring the leading names in Australian and world bartending.

After topping the entire world in the 2012 competition, Philips took home his prize and opened Sydney’s now-famous Bulletin Place.

“World Class is the biggest, most respected, most sought after individual prize in the global bartending industry,” he says. “It’s a platform for the world’s best bartenders’ imaginations to shine.”

For Philips, taking World Class beyond the industry is an important step towards fostering a responsible, creative drinking culture.

“It’s important for people to understand that drinking isn’t just about the alcohol. It’s not about the destination, it’s about the journey. You don’t eat at the Fat Duck to get full. You eat there to enjoy the theatre, product and ambience.”

As for the competition itself, we’re looking forward to some intense national finals, and will keep you involved as one bartender is selected to join 50 of the world’s best to represent Australia at the global final.

We'll keep you involved as Jack Sotti, Australia's national winner, joins 50 of the world’s best to represent Australia at the global final.