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Woodford Reserve -The Wonderful Race – Regional Champions Compete for The Grand Champion Title

Launched in 2023, The Wonderful Race was introduced to pay tribute to the classic Old Fashioned cocktail.

4 JUNE 2024, MALAYSIA – Woodford Reserve, the world’s top-selling super-premium American whiskey, is set to crown the first-ever champion of its inaugural annual competition, The Wonderful Race, on 7 June 2024. At the pinnacle of this thrilling event, the champion will be awarded the prestigious title of Grand Champion 2024, along with many more exciting opportunities throughout the year from Brown-Forman, commemorating their outstanding achievement in mixology excellence. This achievement also awards the champion the opportunity to represent Woodford Reserve on a regional stage at various events.

The Wonderful Race competition celebrates the artistry and skills of bartenders across Asia by providing a platform to showcase their expertise and creativity to reinvent the classic Old Fashioned cocktail. Welcoming mixologists from around the region, this race garnered over 200 submissions in its first run. After various rounds of competitive events, Woodford Reserve proudly presents five finalists, each representing their homeland with flair and finesse:

From left to right: Ellen Xu, Raz Ng, Yung Shen Koh, Kornnaran Mingsamdang & In Kyu Hwang
  • Ellen Xu, Winner of Woodford Reserve: The Wonderful Race China
  • Raz Ng, Winner of Woodford Reserve: The Wonderful Race Singapore
  • Yung Shen Koh, Winner of Woodford Reserve: The Wonderful Race Malaysia
  • Kornnaran Mingsamdang, Winner of Woodford Reserve: The Wonderful Race Thailand
  • In Kyu Hwang, Winner of Woodford Reserve: The Wonderful Race South Korea

The finalists will fight for the prestigious Grand Champion 2024 title at the Woodford Reserve Home Place in Versailles, Kentucky, United States of America. Their ultimate mixology skills will be tested through three key missions. All finalists are expected to go beyond boundaries as they present their respective winning cocktails (Taste The Extraordinary mission), showcase a unique cocktail statement blending bourbon traditions with the bartenders’ own heritage (World’s Best Show In Bourbon mission), and end off with an exceptional cocktail and food pairing (Flavour Wheel Gastronomy mission).

Assessing the contenders’ creations with discerning eyes is a trio of esteemed judges. Holly Graham, the illustrious Asia Envoy for Woodford Reserve Bourbon, brings her industry knowledge and refined palate to the judging panel. Joining her is Christian Suzuki-Orellana, a renowned American bartender and star of Netflix’s Drink Masters, whose expertise promises to lend unparalleled insight to the evaluation process. Completing the panel is Colton Payne, Marketing Director from Brown-Forman, ensuring a fair and captivating competition.

As anticipation mounts, Tiffanie Barriere, the master of ceremonies, is steering this thrilling voyage. A distinguished figure in the cocktail realm, adorned with accolades from Tales of the Cocktail, Michelin, James Beard, and other esteemed institutions, the competition is primed to unfold as a spectacle of excitement and innovation under her guidance.

Get ready to witness history at The Wonderful Race finale, where creativity, skill, and passion converge to redefine the art of mixology. Stay tuned for live updates and exclusive championship coverage on 7 June 2024. For more information and behind-the-scenes insights, follow us on @woodfordreserve_sea on Instagram.


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