Gore woman best Heineken bartender in world

Thomas Green Public House and Dining Room assistant manager Sarah Ewing, of Gore, pulls a second...
Thomas Green Public House and Dining Room assistant manager Sarah Ewing, of Gore, pulls a second glass of beer during the global Heineken bartender final, which she won in Amsterdam this week. PHOTO:SUPPLIED
Gore’s Sarah Ewing can claim ‘‘bragging rights’’ as the best Heineken bartender in the world.

The Thomas Green Public House and Dining Room assistant manager proved you do not have to be from a big city to win the title on Wednesday (NZ time) in Amsterdam.

Mrs Ewing said she found it hard to believe she had competed against the best from nine other countries and won.

‘‘It was pretty unexpected,’’ Mrs Ewing said.

She now had ‘‘bragging rights’’.

‘‘I’m now world Heineken bartender of 2020.’’

Pouring and serving the perfect Heineken in the competition was part technique and part showmanship, she said.

‘‘It’s a full on theatrical performance as well as getting the technical aspects [right].’’

There were five steps involved in the competition; rinsing the glass, pouring the beer into a glass at a 45 degree angle, skimming the foam off the top off the beer, checking the beer-to-foam ratio and walking down a catwalk to serve the beer to the judges.

‘‘You’ve got to do these five steps, you’ve got to make sure there’s the correct amount of foam and beer so that when you eventually present both your twelves of Heineken that they look perfect to the judges.

‘‘There’s so much that goes into it - more than people realise.’’

Competitors were marked on how they performed each of the steps and judges considered questions like ‘‘are you being hospitable?’’.

‘‘Are you presenting those Heinekens with flair and with a smile?’’

At the start of the competition she had a positive attitude.

‘‘I was confident in that I had the right personality that they were looking for.

‘‘I was going in hoping that my technical ability was going to hold up against the other nine competitors.’’

She decided all she could do was do her best and have fun.

‘‘Whatever was going to be, was going to be.’’

She also met the grandson of Freddy Heineken who had started the company.

‘‘He was one of the judges and getting to know him, you felt like you were part of something bigger.

‘‘It was a beautiful experience to feel so included in such a big brand.’’

The Thomas Green and Public House manager Roz Taylor said she was very proud of her world’s-best Heineken bartender.

‘‘She’s been a true professional right throughout and she has done the whole town proud,’’ Ms Taylor said.

It was good for the reputation of the Thomas Green.

‘‘It just goes to show training in Gore is just as world-class as anywhere else in the world.’’

Mataura Licensing Trust manager Mark Paterson said Mrs Ewing’s win was a great day for Gore.

‘‘She's a world champion. It's amazing.

‘‘We should be doing a ticker tape parade,’’ Mr Paterson said.

The trust was ‘‘extremely proud’’ of her efforts.

‘‘Sarah displayed impressive skills under considerable stress to win the title.’’

Many people had contributed to Mrs Ewing’s success, including Thomas Green staff and manager Roz Taylor and DB Breweries Southland territory manager Willie Robertson, he said.

SANDY EGGLESTON @theensign.co.nz

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