An Invercargill bar and a Queenstown bar are competing for top honours in the Guinness Lower South Island pint master competition, with the winner to represent the region in the national final.

Guinness is looking for the perfect New Zealand pint, poured in a welcoming bar, served by a bar person trained in the craft, with knowledgeable experience.

Morrison’s Irish Pub in Queenstown led the regional heat and is closely followed by Level One bar at the Kelvin Hotel in Invercargill.

On the overall national leader board on Friday, Morrison’s Irish Pub was in first place and the Kelvin Hotel in fifth place.

Kelvin Hotel assistant manager Nick Madden said he would like to represent the region and Invercargill in the final.

“Regular Guinness drinkers come into Level One like clockwork for a pint served by a true Irishman,” he said.

Morrison’s Irish Pub Queenstown duty manager Louise King, originally from Ireland, said Guinness was by far the most popular tipple at the Beach St bar.

A Morrison’s bar worker from Australia, Brooke Allen, was in training for the regional perfect pint heats, she said.

Guinness started the search to find the 2012 pint master on September 28, asking Guinness drinkers to rate their pint via a text message or postal entry.

Customers scored their pints on the “perfect pour”, which included pouring Guinness at a 45-degree angle in a clean glass until three-quarters full, allowing the stout to settle, before topping up the glass.

Fitzpatrick’s Irish Pub in Wanaka was sitting ninth on the national table.

Waxy O’Shea’s in Invercargill (36th,) Pog Mahone’s Irish Bar in Queenstown (47th), Bog Irish Bar in Dunedin (73rd) and Lone Star in Wanaka (86th) were also taking part in the competition.

The competition finishes on Wednesday and the winners will be announced on November 8.

Source: Collette Devlin & John Edens,