A History of Nations
by Kacy Seitz
Nations is an internationally known event, organized and run by Jim Allison, President of the Flair Bartending Association (FBA) and Ken Hall, President and Owner of High Spirits Enterprises. Started in 2003 as a smaller budget event at Las Vegas’ Ice House Lounge, this flair bartending competition offers a variety of qualifying rounds such as exhibition flair, speed and pour-testing rounds. This, however, is a unique competition that offers competitors the chance to really showcase their flair bartending skills. Three divisions (or levels) are offered to bartenders, consisting of Amateur (those just getting started), Advanced (those with a few competitions under their belt) and Professional (world famous bartenders).
“The long term goal was to always make Nations an international powerhouse competition focusing only on raw flair,” said Allison. “This is in contrast to other events like Legends, Quest, and Blue Blazer which all focus on more aspects of bartending than just flair.”
2005 – Nations took place at the trendy Cro-Bar in South Beach Miami. Top bartenders from around the world showed up for the second year of this competition, and had a serious throw down of skill. Christian Delpech took home the grand championship.
2006 – Nations moved back to Las Vegas, but this time at the Club Rio to a capacity crowd. At this point, Nations became famous for upsets where the underdogs began to step it up and did the unthinkable to become World Champions…Rodrigo Cao was the first to shock the world by achieving this status with his amazing finals round.
2007 – the then unpolished Vladymyr Buryanov came to the main stage on finals night and threw down just enough to topple the unbeatable Christian Delpech.
2008 – the talent showcased at this year’s event was so great that several world champions literally did not make the finals, and yet again another new comer stormed the stage…
To read full story go to Generationflair.com