The Search for the Stella Artois World Draught Master 2013

Every year, bartenders all over the world battle it out to see who can pour the best pint of Stella Artois, covering the 9 crucial steps for a perfect pour. To be honest I have never realised the amount of details going into serving punters “She Is The Thing of Beauty”- a perfect Chalice of Stella Artois. What are the 9 steps, you might wonder. Here’s a video:

Step 1: The Purification
The Chalice must be cleaned and rinsed.
Step 2: The Sacrifice
The tap is opened in a single swift motion and the first drops of beer are poured.
Step 3: The Liquid Alchemy
The Chalice must be held at a 45° angle, just under the tap.
Step 4: The Crown
Lowering the Chalice permits the natural formation of the foam head.
Step 5: The Removal
The tap is closed quickly and the Chalice removed. No drips permitted.
Step 6: The Beheading (what a step lol)
While the head foams up and threatens to overflow, a head cutter is deployed to smooth it gently.
Step 7: The Cleansing
The bottom and sides of the Chalice are to be cleaned.
Step 8: The Judgment
The perfect amount of foam equals two fingers.
Step 9: The Bestowal
The beer should be presented on a clean coaster, with the logo facing outward.

One fine afternoon, we were invited to witness the birth of 2013 Malaysia’s Stella Artois World Draught Master at the Genting International Convention Centre . Over 40 bartenders signed up for this, which means we were going to watch the ritual 40+ times!

But of course, we were treated to a lunch first to whet our appetite for the beer (or is it the other way round?). As this was the first time I brought my brand new Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX7 (yes, you might have noticed the slight upgrade of my photo quality lately), I went about the took pictures of the food first, naturally.

Sushi for you?
Sushi for you?
Some more canapes
Some more canapes
My messy but delicious plate of food.
My messy but delicious plate of food.
Desserts that I didn't touch.
Desserts that I didn’t touch.

Well, we treated ourselves to some Stella Artois too, these were not poured by the contestants though.

Note the difference in head sizes.
Note the difference in head sizes.

Before long, we were ushered into the hall to watch the competition and we found out that all the beer poured by the contestants will be served to the audience (and judges of course). I guess we were in for a long boozy afternoon!

Judges: Henrik Andersen, Managing Director, Carlsberg Malaysia, Kristian Dahl, Supply Director, Carlsberg Malaysia, Philip Tan, Regional Director for South Asia, AB-InBev International and Edward Arthur Holloway, Senior Vice President of Hotel Operations, Genting Malaysia Berhad.
Judges: Henrik Andersen, Managing Director,
Carlsberg Malaysia, Kristian Dahl, Supply Director, Carlsberg Malaysia, Philip Tan, Regional
Director for South Asia, AB-InBev International and Edward Arthur Holloway, Senior Vice
President of Hotel Operations, Genting Malaysia Berhad.

“A perfect pour is fundamental to experiencing the perfect Stella Artois. The brand’s timehonored 9-step Pouring Ritual helps ensure the beer are served and poured in care, consideration and craftsmanship, and it is important that all those who enjoy Stella Artois pay as much attention to serving it as we do to making it,” said Kenneth Soh, General Manager of Luen Heng F&B Sdn Bhd in his speech.

Liew Xin Yin, the Winner of the 2011 Malaysia World Draught Masters who represented Malaysia at the Global World Draught Masters in Buenos Aires, Argentina did a demonstration of the 9 step pouring ritual and said: “A perfectly poured Chalice is a thing of a beauty. The training and support has helped my skills not only in pursuit of executing the 9-steps pouring ritual flawlessly but also as a bartender. With such a storied brewing tradition, I hope there will be more bartenders who will benefit from this training to ensuring every Chalice of Stella Artois is perfectly poured and serve great beer.”

Stella Artois WDM 2013 (2):  1st Qualifier, Tang Kum Loong performs his winning Stella Artois 9-step Perfect Pour ritual in front of a live crowd.
1st Qualifier, Tang Kum Loong performs his winning Stella Artois 9-step Perfect Pour ritual in front of a live crowd.

After all the contestants have done their thing (we became quite the expert in judging I can tell you), the Top 5 were chosen to perform their pouring ritual for the second time (more beer for us!). It was quite hard to pick the best contestant, but I thought this guy executed the steps well with confidence, so it was no surprise he was the winner of the day.

The winners with happy smiles
The winners with happy smiles: 1st Qualifier – Tang Kum Loong; 2nd Qualifier – Ong Poh Wee who will be competing against other finalists internationally in Bangkok in September; 1st Runner-up – Jessica Chen Mei San, 2nd Runner-up – Eric Hong Wei Lun and 3rd Runner-up – Leong Chee Chong.

After watching the ritual countless time (plus video demonstration while we were on the way to Genting Highlands), we all were itching to try our hands and I certainly had a lot of fun doing it.

With my perfect pour - well the head has diminished a little while trying to get the best shot.
With Stella, but not the one I poured (note the head… lol)

Now does any bar want to hire this hot bartender? 😛 I might be a bit too expensive though.

For more info on Stella Artois, and photos from the event, check out: http://www.facebook.com/StellaArtoisMalaysia and Malaysia’s Hottest Bloggers’ facebook page.

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10 thoughts on “The Search for the Stella Artois World Draught Master 2013

  1. wah, that’s a competition that’s both fun and educational. at first thought, i feared it might become monotonous after awhile, but it sounds like it could have been quite riveting throughout for folks who really pay attention and appreciate this art and skill 😀

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