World Champion Pourer
Forget all those Bavarian, Irish and Aussie beer pourers who claim their techniques are the best in the world. A Philadelphia bartender named Jessica Waltz has the tropy to prove she's truly No. 1.
Waltz, 28, who tends bar at Ten Stone Bar & Restaurant in Philly, won the title in the 9th-annual Stella Artois Global Draught Master competition in Brussels, Belgium. She is the first American to win the title in the two-day event that finds competitors from around the world being judged on technique, presentation and stamina. Each one pulled two glasses of Stella Artois, the renowned Belgian beer and event sponsor, a pint of Hoegaarden, and a single goblet of Leffe Brown poured from a large bottle.
"Everyone wants me to pour them one," Waltz said with a laugh when she was interviewed by Philly.com after returning home in triumph. "I was surprised word spread so quickly."
Was her regular job something that prepared her for the competition? Not really.
"We don't pour from a bottle at Ten Stone, so that's something I never practiced before," she said. "But now I know all the different things I'm supposed to do when I pour."
Her pouring tips for a successful brew-centric event, courtesy of Philly.com:
• Introduce yourself and your beer. Guests want to know a bit about what they're about to swallow.
• Choose the correct glassware. A beer tastes better in its proper glass: pilsners in tall, thin glasses; Belgians in goblets or tulips, for example.
• Make sure it's clean and rinsed. Soap not only impedes foam development, it tastes downright funky.
• Use cold glasses, not warm out of the dishwasher. But not ice cold. That'll kill the flavor.
• Don't be afraid to pour a large head. True, American beer-drinkers think they're getting cheated, but a large collar of foam looks better, protects the beer from smoke and actually adds to the beer's enjoyment.
• Use a head-cutter. Pour until you've got a half-inch of foam above the glass rim; these top bubbles tend to be larger, adding to gassiness. Trim them off with a blade so the remaining collar consists of compact bubbles.
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Posted by William M. Dowd at 1:13 AM