Well it’s a few weeks now since the glasses were washed, the bars wiped down and the empties recycled after this year’s Bristol Cocktail Week which, for the first time ever, welcomed consumers to a varied selection of drinks brand sponsored events throughout the week.
This also marked the first year that Agave Blue Marketing has been involved in the project, working alongside the crack Bristol bartending team of BCW founder Annie Mason of The Milk Thistle, Richard Tring of Red Light, Oliver Hiller of Hausbar and Dee Davies, formally of Hyde & Co (and currently promoting the launch of her own “Jinzu” gin in collaboration with Diageo) to bring the whole week to life.
The week began on Monday, 20th October with an 11 hour bartending “safari supper” style extravaganza when, through a series of 6 knock out heats, 14 of Bristols most talented bartenders spent the day competing for the coveted Bristol Bartender Cup, the winner of which would be crowned Bristol’s Best Bartender 2014. Each round was kindly sponsored by a different drinks brand and held in one of 5 different cocktail bars across the city.
The consumer events kicked off on the Tuesday evening when Distiller Tim Edwards of Somerset Cider Brandy Company gave a lively presentation at Bristol Cocktail Week’s at Hyde & Co. This was followed the next day by a convivial tasting and food pairing session with Harveys sherry held at Red Light. The Jinzu gin launch event at The Milk Thistle on Thursday evening proved very popular, not least because Jinzu is the creation of Bristol Cocktail Week’s very own Dee Davies. Bacardi came to Bristol with their 1930s Cuba night held in the Grade II listed cocktail bar in The Mauretania and the consumer events culminated in the proudly unusual presentation of “Gin Through The Ages” by Hendrick’s held at the astoundingly beautiful Averys’ Bristol Cellars.
Bristol Cocktail Week came to a fitting and very celebratory conclusion with the trade award ceremony on the Sunday evening where Bristol’s Best Bartender, Emilio di Salvo of Red Light was fittingly presented with his award. Another first was the announcement of Bristol’s best bars as voted for by the public across 4 categories: Best Service, Best Menu, Best Atmosphere and Best All Round Bar. Hausbar won for Best Service. Red Light took 3 of these awards and was named Bristol’s Best Bar 2014.
Judging by the feedback which continues to come in from the trade and consumers alike through our post event surveys, the consensus is that Bristol Cocktail Week 2014 has been a roaring success. Keep your eyes and ears peeled for news about Bristol Cocktail Week 2015. It’s going to be a …..corker!