Industry News

Tales of the Cocktail Announces 2017 Spirited Awards Winners

Congrats to our 2017 Spirited Award Winners!
Congrats to our 2017 Spirited Award Winners!

Following an impressive pool of nominees and months of careful evaluation by some of the most respected individuals in the spirits and cocktail industries, Tales of the Cocktail® is thrilled to announce the winners of the 11th Annual Spirited Awards®. Each of these winners was in front of a crowd of their peers and supporters at the Sheraton Hotel in New Orleans, hosted by comedian and actor Michael Ian Black. In addition to the judged winners, Tales also awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award to Charles Schumann.

“The Spirited Awards get more and more competitive because our industry keeps raising its game every single year,” said Ann and Paul Tuennerman, Co-Founders of Tales of the Cocktail®. “Congrats to this year’s winners on monumental accomplishment.”

Since being founded in 2007, the Spirited Awards® have grown to become one of the prestigious and sought-after awards in the industry. Recognizing writers and brand ambassadors alongside bartenders and bars, the Awards showcase the talent found throughout every aspect of the spirits and cocktail world. Winners were voted on by two panels of over 100 industry experts, led by Charlotte Voisey (Chairperson), Jacob Briars (International Judging Committee Chairman), Paul Clarke (Writing Committee Chairman) and Brooke Arthur, Bridget Albert and Derek Brown (U.S. Judging Committee Chairs).

“The 15th annual Spirited Awards have once again successfully celebrated excellence in our industry,” said Charlotte Voisey, Director of Brand Advocacy for William Grant & Sons and Chairperson of the Sprited Awards®. “I am so thrilled for each winner as well as all of the finalists honored along the way, especially the new bars that have burst on to the scenes in the last year.”

While every award presented carries a high level of prestige, the final award announced is always the most coveted among nominees. The World’s Best Bar award compiles the gross votes for both American and International finalists in the following categories: Best High Volume Cocktail Bar, Best Hotel Bar, Best Restaurant Bar, Best Cocktail Bar or World’s Best Cocktail Menu. From this incredibly competitive pool of finalists, it was Dandelyan that edged out as the victor, taking home both the signature Riedel Crystal Trophy and the bragging rights of being honored as the best in the world.

2017 Spirited Award® Recipients


American Categories

Best American Bar Team

Presented by William Grant & Sons

The NoMad Bar (New York)

Best American Brand Ambassador

Presented by NOCCPS

Misty Kalkofen (Del Maguey)

Best American High Volume Cocktail Bar

Presented by William Grant & Sons

Sweet Liberty Drinks and Supply Co. (Miami, FL)

Best American Restaurant Bar

Presented by Suze

Dante (New York)

American Bartender of the Year

Presented by Bacardi

Jeff Bell (New York)

Best American Cocktail Bar

Presented by Lillet

Columbia Room (Washington, D.C)

Best American Hotel Bar

Presented by Elijah Craig

The Hawthorne at Hotel Commonwealth (Boston)

Best New American Cocktail Bar

Presented by Luxardo

BlackTail (New York)


International Categories

Best International Bar Team

Presented by Angostura

Dandelyan (London)

Best International Brand Ambassador

Presented by Rutte

Camille Ralph Vidal (St. Germain)

Best International High Volume Cocktail Bar

Presented by 1724 Tonic Water

Trailer Happiness (London)

Best International Restaurant Bar

Presented by Suze

Tippling Club (Singapore)

International Bartender of the Year

Presented by Bacardi

Shingo Gokan (Shanghai)

Best International Cocktail Bar

Presented by Chivas

Black Pearl (Melbourne)

Best International Hotel Bar

Presented by Bound Bar

Dandelyan at the Mondrian (London)

Best New International Cocktail Bar

Presented by Pierre Ferrand

Swift (London)


Writing Categories

Best Cocktail and Spirits Publication

Presented by Gin Mare

Hot Rum Cow

Best New Cocktail & Bartending Book

Presented by Nikka Whisky

Smuggler’s Cove: Exotic Cocktails, Rum, and the Cult of Tiki by Martin and Rebecca Cate

Best Cocktail & Spirits Writer

Presented by Beam Suntory

Wayne Curtis

Best New Spirits Book

Presented by Pierre Ferrand

Bourbon: The Rise, Fall, and Rebirth of an American Whiskey by Fred Minnick


Global Categories

Best Bar Mentor

Presented by BarSmarts

David Wondrich

World’s Best Cocktail Menu

Presented by Beam Suntory

Trick Dog (San Francisco)

Best New Spirit or Cocktail Ingredient

Presented by Bound Bar

ITALICUS - Rosolio di Bergamotto (Italy)

World’s Best Spirits Selection

Presented by Montecristo Cigar Bar

canon: whiskey and bitters emporium (Seattle)

World’s Best Cocktail Bar

Presented by Elijah Craig

Dandelyan (London)

Lifetime Achievement Award

Presented by William Grant & Sons

Charles Schumann

This year official sponsoring partners of the Spirited Awards ® were 1724 Tonic Water, Bacardi USA, BarSmarts, Beam Suntory, Bound at The Cromwell, Chivas, Elijah Craig Small Batch Bourbon, GH Mumm, Gin Mare, House of Angostura, Lillet, Luxardo, Maison Ferrand, Montecristo Cigar Bar at Caesars Palace, Nikka Whiskey, Rutte Gin, Suze Bitters & Liqueurs and William Grant & Sons.

To view the past Spirited Awards® winners, click here. To learn more about Tales of the Cocktail ®, please click here.

Hannah Kobrin is an editorial intern for Tales. Currently, she is working on finishing her BA in English literature at Tulane University.

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