The official kick-off party for the inaugural Kampala Cocktail Week (KCW) was held at Big Mike’s, one of Kampala’s leading cocktail bars on Wednesday night.
The event was organized by the Pearl Guide and Uganda Waragi, the lead sponsor of KCW. Kampala Cocktail Week will run from the 3rd to 12th of December, 2015. Over 15 top cocktail bars will be participating. Special edition celebratory cocktail menus will be on offer in these bars at generous discounts with prices as low as UGX5, 000.
Ladies enjoying cocktails
The official kickoff party was open to members of the public and was aimed towards ushering in a new urban nightlife culture of fine drinking, where high quality ingredients and spirits take center stage, supported by inventive bar-tending. Those in attendance were treated to a sampling of delectable cocktails like the Kololo Sunset, Muyenga Sunrise and the Mosquito Mojito, to mention but a few.
The event also featured a ‘Baptize the Cocktail’ contest where those in attendance were asked to vote on what names they would like to baptize a cocktail that will feature during the cocktail week.
The names to choose from were the Lord Mayor, Liquid Rolex and Luzinda’s Desire. The Liquid Rolex won the contest and will be one of the cocktails on offer during the Cocktail Week.
A waiter showing off cocktails ready for consumption
A number of events have been scheduled during the cocktail week. There will be a luxurious mini-holiday experience on a luxury charter to the Pineapple Bay on Bulago Island on 5th December 2015. Tickets are available for sale on the Pearl Guide digital platforms.
There will also be a two for one Wednesday on 9th December at Nimaro, Piato, Iguana and Tamarai where two cocktails will be offered for the price of one. A UG Mix Off party is also scheduled to take place on 11th December, 2015 to mark the end of the cocktail week where two bartenders will battle it out with the crowd voting on which one possesses the best skills.
Kampala Cocktail Week launch on Wednesday
The event emcees, Malaika Nyanzi and Denzel Mwiyeretsi did a good job keeping the crowd engaged throughout the night with the easy banter between them.
There were several contests during the night with exciting prizes attached to them for the winners. A lucky couple, Mr. and Mrs. Ochan won themselves tickets to the Uganda Waragi Coconut Luxury Charter at Pineapple Bay this weekend.
Some of the winners at the cocktail week
Speaking on the significance of the sponsorship of KCW, Rhona Namanya, Brand Manager, Uganda Waragi said “Kampala Cocktail Week is about giving our customers a sensational drinking experience and UBL is proud to have its signature premium gin, Uganda Waragi, as the lead sponsor for this event.
We also have a running campaign, the ‘50 ways to drink your UG’ which is about introducing our customers to new ways of enjoying their premium gin.
Cocktails have been top of this agenda”. So many exciting things have happened to the brand this year to mark the celebration of their 50th anniversary.The brand launched a new world class iconic bottle, two new flavor variants; coconut and coffee and a trendy gift pack to tap into the gifting culture of Ugandans.
Some of the cocktails that were available
The bartenders also did a good job showcasing their skill with antiques such as flaring to produce unique cocktails like the Flaming Lamborghini. Flair bar-tending is the practice of bartenders entertaining guests, clientele or audiences with the manipulation of bar tools (e.g. cocktail shakers) and liquor bottles in tricky, dazzling ways. Used occasionally in cocktail bars, the action requires skills commonly associated with jugglers.
The bartenders participating in the Kampala Cocktail Week have been trained under the prestigious Diageo Master Bar Academy whose aim is to train bartenders to gain a better understanding of Diageo spirits and in turn, be able to deliver world class serves through innovative recipes to the consumer. The MBA (as it’s known informally) is Africa’s largest bartender training and certification program – with over 10,000 bartenders across Africa and in 25 cities spread across 9 countries.