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Queenstown has the best pint pourers in NZ

Guinness Me - Queenstown has the best pint pourers in the country

Auckland, Friday 5 December 2008 – Queenstown is officially the home of New Zealand’s best Guinness pint pourers thanks to Ross Feeney and Jim Griffiths from Pog Mahone’s Irish Bar who emerged the victors of the inaugural Guinness Pint Master competition in Auckland last night.

The winners battled four other teams from around the country during the Pint Master finals, held at the Atrium Bar at Sky City in Auckland last night. The competition is designed to highlight the art of pouring Guinness in a bid to ensure that Kiwi Guinness drinkers receive the perfect pint.

Masters of the pint, Ross and Jim, won over the judges with their near flawless technique in the Perfect Pour round, scoring high on more than 20 detailed judging criteria that include the glass being held at the correct angle, the proper height of the head and a lack of spills or drips. In the Creative Pour round, they skilfully created a “kiwi” motif in the creamy Guinness head, and served a unique Guinness cocktail creation incorporating a Gibbston Valley Pinot Noir and a balsamic, black pepper and clove reduction.

Philip Doyle, Irish expat, country manager for Diageo and a judge at last night’s final, says the competition was very close – as well as being great craic!

“The competition highlights how important it is to get the pour right with a pint of Guinness. Well-poured Guinness tastes a treat – Kiwis deserve to drink the best. We hope that it will encourage bar tenders to strive to pour the finest pints possible and that the Kiwi Guinness drinker will have more insight into what they should be demanding from their bartender.” (See below for Guinness’s Top 5 Tips.)

He adds, “Ross and Jim embodied the spirit of Guinness adding personality and charisma during their pours and demonstrated impressive skill and knowledge of Guinness.”


Rik Chambers, the Global Quality Control Manager for Guinness who also served on the judging panel, was extremely impressed with the calibre of Kiwi pint-pouring talent.

Mandy Martin and Malcolm Fox from The Clare Inn in Auckland took out the Runners-up spot, each winning a 42” TV.

The other regional winners represented in the national final included Dermot Murphy and Finnbar Clabby from D4 in Wellington, husband and wife team Alistair and Liz Hawthorne from Seumus’s in Picton and Rosemarie Cavaney and Robyn Webster from Joxer Daly’s in Wellington.

The finals involved three rounds including the Perfect Pour, the Creative Pour, where contestants must create a badge in the creamy head, and a Guinness Cocktail of their own creation.

The judging panel included Philip Doyle, country manager for Diageo, Richard Chambers, Guinness Brew Master, Andre Rowell, editor of M2 Magazine and Pat Murphy, Assistant Creative Director at Rapp.  The event was MCed by Jeremy Corbett.

More than 200 bars and pubs across New Zealand competed for a place in the finals of the Pint Master challenge.  Competition rounds took place in pubs nationwide since September, with more than 14,000 votes collected from Kiwi Guinness drinkers.

What should Kiwi drinkers look for in the perfect pint of Guinness?

·         A clean Guinness glass with no bubbles sticking to the inside.

·         An initial 450  pour and time allowed for it to settle.

·         Finished with a beautiful, creamy Guinness head.

·         The perfect presentation to you with no spillage.

·         That rich, distinctive velvety taste of Guinness.

·         Great service – friendly, knowledgeable, a craftsperson



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