four spirited liqueurs with true heritage

Truly great drinks are easy to make, you just need the elements, unique ingredients & a story to tell.

Back to the Roots 2019

A low-abv long drink or a classic twist:
”Simplicity with a story to tell”

3 winners • 3 COUNTRIES

The Finalists


Alessandro Di Fabrizio - La Nuova Lavanderia - Pescara
Alessandro Governatori - Corso Garibaldi 59, Bar Torino 1860 - Ancona
Corey Squarzoni - Luca & Andrea - Milano
Eduard junior Reinche - Garage Nardini - Bassano del grappa
Gabriele Tammaro - Octavius Bar @ The Stage Milano - Milano
Gabriele Zambelli - Free Style - Scandiano (Reggio Emilia)
Ilya Gorshkov - MAD Souls& Spirits - Florence
Leonardo Todisco - Rita & Cocktails - Milano
Manuel Monetti - Voia - Art, Food & Cocktail Bar - Rome
Marco Carcatella - Le Malve - Parma
Mattia Lotti Jigger - Spiriti e Cucina - Reggio Emilia
Mirko Salvagno - Il Gallone cocktail bar - Mantova
Nicoló Rossi - Barrier - Bergamo
Stefano Zuliani - MOR - Trieste
Suraya Canton - Officine riunite Milanesi - Milano


Alessandro Zampieri - Il Mercante - Venice
Livio Carrubba - Cloakroom Cocktail Lab - Treviso
Luca Granero - Mago di oz - Torino

The Italian Final

Octavius the Stage, Milano

Monday 10th of June

Meet the Judges

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Mihai Ostafi

Mihai was born in Romania. His bartender carreer began back home almost 8 years ago in Arad. In London his first job was "Skygarden" situated on the top floors of the Walkie talkie building After almost one year in Skygarden, he got the opportunity to do another major opening: Oriole bar. He is the head bartender in Oriole & from the beginning of 2018 Mihai became new brand UK Ambassador for Roots


Benjamin Cavagna

Benjamin Cavagna is from small town between Milan & Verona. He studied philosophy in Milan while discovering his passion about whiskies and spirits, which he collects. During university he started working behind the bar and loved bartender’s life. Five years ago he met Marco Russo & Flavio Angiolillo, now friends and business partners, and he started to work at 1930, the same family of MagCafe, Backdoor43 and Iter.

The Finalists


Alessandro Geraci - Chiltern Firehouse - London
Alessandro Vella - Bar 45 at 45 Park Lane - London
Andrey Schmalbach - Langham hotel main bar - London
Davide Leanza - Punch Room at the London Edition - London
Fabio Fanni - Do Not Disturb - London
Filip Stribrny - Novikov - London
Jacopo Correnti - Oriole - London
Jason-Candid Knüsel - American Bar at the Savoy - London
Jim Whitmore - Toto - Newcastle
Juan Jose Orellano - Beaufort Bar , Savoy Hotel - London
Marshall Seyler - Hawksmoor Spitalfields - London
Massimiliano Bosio - The Den Cocktail Bar | D&D London - London
Samuele Schittulli - The Alchemist - London
Tasos Boskos - The Churchill Bar and Terrace - London
Theodoros Konstantopoulos - Sky Pod & City Garden - London


Claudio Furio - The London Edition - London
Robin Poropat - The Booking Office "St. Pancras Renaissance" - London
Svetoslav Chochev - Aqua Shard - London

The UK Final


Tuesday 11th of June

Meet the Judges


Tony Pescatori

Tony's passion for the craft has its roots in a rural Italian catering background where from the 13th year of age. Moved to London right after graduating from catering school to deepen his knowledge of the bar world: after two years in Shoreditch house learning how to work in a big team and a busy environment he joined the Nightjar team in 2012 being the Bar Manager of one of the best bars in the world for the past 3 years.


Evan Prousaefs

Evan Prousaefs is the Bar Manager of Meraki bar & restaurant, with experience in high-end venues in London and Mykonos. He was running the Bar & Beverage department of Nammos group and has strong background in openings, including the first Ling Lin Hakkasan.

See the entries !

During the years we have had the honour to receive entries and finalists from some of the best bars in the world, such as Oriole, the Connaught bar, the American bar at the Savoy, the Aviary, Scarfes among others and finalists were judged by personalities such as the likes of Ben Reed, Simone Caporale, Mattia Pastori etc.