The Cocktail Lovers Magazine Issue 48



Last call for entries for Havana Club Cocktail Maestros 2024 (you’ve got to be in it to win it)

ByThe Cocktail Lovers


Knock, knock! The Havana Club Maestros competition is waiting at the door. Consider this your last chance to let them in. 

We know, we know, the call for the competition went out in November and before you had time to think who from your bar team you might want to buddy up with, let alone consider the nuances of the drink you might want to create, along came the run-up to the festive period.

No such distractions in January. Which is fortunate because there’s still time to get your thinking caps on and get your entries in. You have until 15th January 2024 to choose the person you want to enter the challenge with – you both need to work at the same venue remember. Said venue must operate as a cocktail bar and/or feature a dedicated cocktail menu. Them’s the rules. See more below.

As for what’s in it for you, it wouldn’t be Havana Club without a global final that’s set to immerse the winning teams in the colour, culture and cocktails of Cuba. You’ll be treated to four days in the capital, Havana, where you’ll get the opportunity to tour the distillery, enjoy privileged times with the Maestros and friends of Havana Club family and of course, showcase your drink on the global stage.

But that’s not all. How does a cash prize of €5,000 for each of you sound? Not only that but you’ll each receive a swanky Havana Club trophy to show off to your colleagues, a beautiful bottle of Havana Club Maximo and guaranteed ticket to return to Cuba for the next Cocktail Maestros Global Finale where you’ll be the hot seats as judges and presenting the Cocktail Maestros trophies to the winning teams. 

So what do you need to do to be in with a chance of being crowned the Havana Club Maestro 2024 winning team? Never fear, we’ve got all your questions answered below…

How do I apply?

Like we mentioned above, the first thing you need to do is choose someone from your place of work to partner up with as a team. And worth noting, you need to apply on behalf of your bar. 

Gotcha. Now what?

You and your fellow bartender and bar must follow the Instagram link on the call-to-action video below or via the Havana Club website.

Next, make sure you sign up and enter all necessary personal details of each participating team member. A confirmation email will then be sent to both of you, along with competition and The Maestro Session details.

Hold up, what are The Maestro Sessions?

Ah yes. You can find out more about them here, but in a nutshell, they are a series of very cool, very insightful educational videos focused on four distinct pillars: Liquid, Flavour, Hustle and Expression.

Nice one. Then what?

Once you’ve been inspired by the The Maestros in the sessions, you’ll have all the background information and skills you need to get to the fun part: the creation of your cocktail. 

What’s the spec?

Exciting! Your mission is to create a drink that represents the essence, the distinct personality of your team. How you do it is up to the two of you but your cocktail must hero one of the Havana Club expressions, choosing between either Havana Club Original 3 Años, 7 Años, Especial, or the coveted Selección de Maestro. That’s the base, the rest of the drink must feature two homemade ingredients – one from each team member – within the final creation. But choose carefully, not only does the resulting drink need to taste good, you have to explain why you’ve each gone for your individual ingredient to create a harmonious cocktail.

Very nice! Anything else?

Yes, one more thing that also taps into your creativity. You’ll need to take and submit two captivating images: one of your cocktail creation (featuring Havana Club Rum bottle); the other which captures the unique personality of your team. Don’t worry if you don’t think you have the skills – one of our favourite photographers, Lateef Okunnu, shares his invaluable tips on getting your images just-so in his Maestro Session on Expression.

Can you remind me of the key dates?

Of course! Mark the following down in your diary:

15th January: last date to submit your entries
21st January-15th February: National Finals (dates tbc)
15th-18th April: Global final

Submission recap: 

The Drink – including your cocktail name
The recipe
The two photos – one of the drink, one of the team
Dates: Get your entries in by 15th January 2024.
For more details and to submit entries, visit

Entry T&Cs

Collaboration and teamwork is at the heat of this competition so each team should consist of two bartenders per team
• All entrants must hold a valid passport for international travel, including Cuba
• Both team members must apply on behalf of their bar and must work at the same venue. 
• Said venue must operate as a cocktail bar or have a standalone cocktail menu
• Team venues are not required to stock Havana Club.
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The Cocktail Lovers

The Cocktail Lovers are Mr G and Ms S, a man and a woman who share a passion for cocktails. (We also happen to be married, so we’re cocktail lovers in more ways than one…)


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The Cocktail Lovers Magazine Issue 48
The Cocktail Lovers Magazine Issue 48

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