Cuba now holds the world record for the largest Cuba Libre ever crafted after this year’s XXII Pan American Cocktail Rally International Bartenders' Association (IBA) in Havana Sunday.
Over the course of an hour, spectators gawked as a team of bartenders poured 500 liters of liquor into a ginormous two-meter-high vat erected in the Tryp Habana Libre hotel lobby.
A total of 108 bottles of rum, 200 liters of a Cuban “TuKola” drink, and a dash of lemon juice were used to create the cocktail of the century.
“It is a Cuba Libre fiesta for all the bartenders of Cuba and the world to keep up to date with new trends and be more professional,” Sergio Serrano, vice president of the Cuban Bartender Association (ACC).
A returning champion of the 2003 bartending competition, Serrano said it was “pleasure and an honor” to craft one of the world’s preferred cocktails in the country of its birth and the top rum distributor.
The multicultural, week-long event drew mixologists from eighteen countries: the United States, Uruguay, Dominican Republic, Peru, Nicaragua, Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Spain, Venezuela, Portugal, Puerto Rico, Cuba, Belize, and Panama.
The bartenders will test their talents in a series of competitions including Classic Pan American Cup modalities, the Classic Friendship Cup, and the Bartender Challenge.
The festival which draws to a close on Aug. 31 offers tastings, master classes, and seminars with rum makers, liquor distributors, and marketing companies.
Home to the first bartenders’ club- established in 1924- Cuba hopes to host the 2022 World Cocktail Championships, ACC president Jose Rafa Melem said during a press conference Wednesday.