Industry News

Tales of the Cocktail® Announces the Top 10 Nominees for the 2017 Spirited Awards®

Top 10 Spirited Awards Nominees
These nominees were chosen from more than 1000 submissions for the chance of being named the industry’s best bars, bartenders, writers and more.

New Orleans, LA – June 9, 2017 – After more than a month of evaluating 1,000+ incredibly qualified nominations, the top ten for each Spirited Awards® category have been selected. The American and International committees, consisting of the industry’s most respected professionals and led by Spirited Awards® Chairperson Charlotte Voisey, assessed each nomination with care to ensure they met the essential criteria before presenting the list of qualified entries to committee judges. The judges’ deliberation and eventual votes yielded this year’s top ten nominees.

“To receive a top ten nod for the Spirited Awards is a monumental accomplishment,” said Ann Tuennerman, Founder of Tales of the Cocktail. “I want to thank our judges for taking on this very difficult task of selecting just 10 finalists from so many qualified and deserving nominees.”

At 2:00 PM CST on Friday, June 16th, Tales of the Cocktail will host an exclusive Facebook Live event, where the top 4 nominees in each category will be announced. Each of the finalists will be invited to attend the live ceremony in New Orleans during Tales of the Cocktail® 2017, where the winners will receive the iconic Riedel Crystal trophy.

“I am delighted to see this year’s Top 10 nominees for the Spirited Awards,” said Charlotte Voisey, Chairperson of the Spirited Awards®. “Every year the nomination and judging process shows just how rich and talented our industry is and continues to be. With literally thousands of nominations received, huge congratulations go out to all of the bars, people, products, and publications represented in the Top 10 lists.”

The Spirited Awards® were founded in 2007 to recognize the efforts of the best and brightest professionals within the cocktail and spirits industries. Twenty-four awards will be handed out to the industry’s best bars, bartenders, writers, distillers and more. This year, the Spirited Awards® ceremony will take place on Saturday, July 22 at the Sheraton Hotel as part of the 15th Annual Tales of the Cocktail® celebration.

The Spirited Awards® are made possible by the generous support of our sponsors: 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, Montecristo Cigar Bar at Caesars Palace, Nikka Whiskey, Pierre Ferrand Cognac, Rutte Gin, Suze Bitters & Liqueurs and William Grant & Sons.


Spirited Award® Finalists

Categories marked with a star indicate a tie for top ten placement.


American Categories


Best American Bar Team

  • Anvil Bar and Refuge (Houston, TX)
  • Attaboy (New York, NY)
  • Columbia Room (Washington, DC)
  • Eastern Standard Kitchen & Drinks (Boston, MA)
  • Herbs & Rye (Las Vegas, NV)
  • PDT (New York, NY)
  • Sweet Liberty Drinks & Supply Company (Miami, FL)
  • The Dead Rabbit (New York, NY)
  • The NoMad Bar (New York, NY)
  • Williams & Graham (Denver, CO)


American Bartender of the Year

  • Ezra Star of Drink (Boston, MA)
  • Jeff Bell of PDT (New York, NY)
  • Jillian Vose of The Dead Rabbit (New York, NY)
  • John Lermayer of Sweet Liberty Drinks & Supply Company (Miami, FL)
  • Kevin Diedrich of Pacific Cocktail Heaven (San Francisco, CA)
  • Masahiro Urushido of Saxon + Parole (New York, NY)
  • Micah Melton of The Aviary (Chicago, IL)
  • Ms. Franky Marshall of Le Boudoir (New York, NY)
  • Ran Duan of The Baldwin Bar (Woburn, MA)
  • Yael Vengroff of The Spare Room (Los Angeles, CA)


Best American Brand Ambassador

  • Andie Ferman (St. George Spirits)
  • Anne Louise Marquis (Campari USA)
  • Jessamine McLellan (Pernod Ricard)
  • Johnnie the Scot (Beam Suntory)
  • Lynn House (Heaven Hill)
  • Misty Kalkofen (Del Maguey)
  • Robin Nance (Beam Suntory)
  • Ryan Maybee (J. Rieger & Co.)
  • Tim Cooper (The 86 co.)
  • Trevor Schneider (Reyka)


Best American Cocktail Bar

  • Anvil Bar and Refuge (Houston, TX)
  • Attaboy (New York, NY)
  • BAR GOTO (New York, NYC)
  • canon: whiskey and bitters emporium (Seattle, WA)
  • Columbia Room (Washington, DC)
  • Cure (New Orleans, LA)
  • PDT (New York, NY)
  • Pouring Ribbons (New York, NY)
  • The Walker Inn (Los Angeles, CA)
  • Trick Dog (San Francisco, CA)


Best American High Volume Cocktail Bar*

  • Best Intentions (Chicago, IL)
  • Bitter & Twisted Cocktail Parlour (Phoenix, AZ)
  • Blackbird Ordinary (Miami, FL)
  • Clover Club (New York, NY)
  • Drink (Boston, MA)
  • Harvard & Stone (Los Angeles, CA)
  • Honeycut (Los Angeles, CA)
  • Sweet Liberty Drinks & Supply Company (Miami, FL)
  • The Esquire Tavern (San Antonio, TX)
  • The NoMad Bar (New York, NY)
  • Three Dots and a Dash (Chicago, IL)


Best American Hotel Bar

  • Compere Lapin at Old No. 77 Hotel (New Orleans, LA)
  • Libertine Social at Mandalay Bay (Las Vegas, NV)
  • Proof on Main at 21c Museum Hotel (Louisville, KY)
  • Regent Cocktail Club at Gale South Beach Hotel (Miami, FL)
  • Roof at Park South at Park South Hotel (New York, NY)
  • Sternewirth Bar & Clubroom at Hotel Emma (San Antonio, TX)
  • The Berkshire Room at Acme Hotel (Chicago, IL)
  • The Hawthorne at The Commonwealth Hotel (Boston, MA)
  • The Spare Room at The Roosevelt Hotel (Los Angeles, CA)
  • Vesper Bar at The Cosmopolitan (Las Vegas, NV)


Best American Restaurant Bar

  • 27 Restaurant & Bar (Miami, FL)
  • Beaker & Gray (Miami, FL)
  • Cane & Table (New Orleans, LA)
  • Dante NYC (New York, NY)
  • Gramercy Tavern (New York, NY)
  • Otium (Los Angeles, CA)
  • Redbird (Los Angeles, CA)
  • Spoon and Stable (Minneapolis, MN)
  • The Baldwin Bar (Woburn, MA)
  • The Rieger (Kansas City, MO)


Best New American Cocktail Bar

  • Bar Clacson (Los Angeles, CA)
  • BlackTail (New York, NY)
  • Coup (New York, NY)
  • Downstairs at The Esquire Tavern (San Antonio, TX)
  • False Idol (San Diego, CA)
  • Fresh Kills Bar (Brooklyn, NY)
  • Jupiter Disco (Brooklyn, NY)
  • Tongue-Cut Sparrow (Houston, TX)
  • UnderTow (Phoenix, AZ)
  • Wildhawk (San Francisco, CA)

International Categories


Best International Bar Team

  • Black Pearl (Melbourne, Australia)
  • Boadas Cocktails (Barcelona, Spain)
  • Dandelyan (London, UK)
  • El Copitas Bar (St. Petersburg, Russia)
  • Happiness Forgets (London, UK)
  • Imperial Craft Cocktail Bar (Tel-Aviv, Israel)
  • Le Calbar (Paris, France)
  • Lost + Found Drinkery (Nicosia, Cyprus)
  • Swift (London, UK)
  • The Connaught Bar (London, UK)


International Bartender of the Year*

  • Chris Hysted-Adams of Black Pearl (Melbourne, Australia)
  • Erik Lorincz of the American Bar (London, UK)
  • Iain Griffiths of Dandelyan (London, UK)
  • Jennifer Le Nechet of Café Moderne (Paris, France)
  • Joe Schofield of Tippling Club (Singapore)
  • Marcis Dzelzainis of Sager + Wilde Paradise Row (London, UK)
  • Nico de Soto of Danico (Paris, France)
  • Shingo Gokan of Speak Low (Shanghai, China)
  • Steve Schneider of Employees Only (Singapore)
  • Tess Posthumus of Door 74 (Amsterdam, Netherlands)
  • Vasilis Kyritsis of The Clumsies (Athens, Greece)


Best International Brand Ambassador

  • Camille Ralph Vidal (St~Germain)
  • Dickie Cullimore (Bacardi)
  • George Nemec (Becherovka)
  • Ian Burrell (Rum Ambassador)
  • Joe McCanta (Grey Goose)
  • Konstantin "CoCo" Prochorowski (Hendrick’s Gin)
  • Meimi Sanchez (Havana Club)
  • Raj Nagra (Bombay Gins)
  • Richard Neil Irwin (Bacardi Ltd)
  • Sebastian Hamilton-Mudge (Beefeater Gin)


Best International Cocktail Bar

  • 1862 Dry Bar (Madrid, Spain)
  • Black Pearl (Melbourne, Australia)
  • Bramble (Edinburgh, Scotland)
  • Le Lion • Bar de Paris (Hamburg, Germany)
  • Le Syndicat, organisation de défense des spiritueux français (Paris, France)
  • Licorería Limantour (Mexico City, Mexico)
  • Little Red Door (Paris, France)
  • The Dark Horse (Bath, UK)
  • The Everleigh (Melbourne, Australia)
  • The Gibson (London, UK)
  • This Must Be The Place (Sydney, Australia)


Best International High Volume Cocktail Bar

  • Eau De Vie (Melbourne, Australia)
  • Heartbreaker (Melbourne, Australia)
  • HIMKOK (Oslo, Norway)
  • London Cocktail Club - Goodge St. (London, UK)
  • Oriole (London, UK)
  • Panda & Sons (Edinburgh, Scotland)
  • Paradiso (Barcelona, Spain)
  • The Barber Shop (Sydney, Australia)
  • The Baxter Inn (Sydney, Australia)
  • Trailer Happiness (London, UK)


Best International Hotel Bar

  • American Bar at The Savoy (London, UK)
  • Beaufort Bar at The Savoy (London, UK)
  • Charles H. at the Four Seasons Hotel (Seoul, Korea)
  • Dandelyan at The Mondrian (London, UK)
  • Fifty Mils at the Four Seasons Hotel (Mexico City, Mexico)
  • Imperial Craft Cocktail Bar at The Imperial (Tel-Aviv, Israel)
  • Manhattan Bar at The Regent (Singapore)
  • Punch Room at The Edition (London, UK)
  • Scarfes Bar at The Rosewood (London, UK)
  • The Zetter Townhouse (London, UK)


Best International Restaurant Bar

  • City Social (London, UK)
  • Le Mary Celeste (Paris, France)
  • Maybe Frank (Sydney, Australia)
  • Sager + Wilde (London, UK)
  • Sexy Fish (London, UK)
  • The Blind Pig at Social Eating House (London, UK)
  • The Bon Vivant (Edinburgh, UK)
  • The Clove Club (London, UK)
  • Tippling Club (Singapore)
  • Zuma (Dubai, United Arab Emirates)


Best New International Cocktail Bar*

  • ATLAS (Singapore)
  • Blackbird at The Dark Horse (Bath, UK)
  • Danico (Paris, France)
  • Dr. Stravinsky (Barcelona, Spain)
  • Guilhotina Bar (São Paulo, Brazil)
  • LA COMMUNE (Paris, France)
  • Odori Vermuteria di Atene (Athens, Greece)
  • Salmon Guru (Madrid, Spain)
  • Swift (London, UK)
  • The Distillery (London, UK)
  • Three Sheets (London, UK)

Writing Categories


Best Cocktail & Spirits Publication

  • Australian Bartender
  • Class Magazine
  • Cocktail Wonk
  • Difford's Guide (diffordsguide.com)
  • DRiNK Magazine
  • Drinks International
  • Hot Rum Cow
  • Liquor.com
  • Rumporter Magazine
  • The Daily Beast Drink + Food


Best Cocktail & Spirits Writer*

  • Alyson Sheppard
  • Becky Paskin
  • François Monti
  • Fred Minnick
  • Hamish Smith
  • Kara Newman
  • Max Watman
  • Noah Rothbaum
  • Robert Simonson
  • Simon Difford
  • Wayne Curtis


Best New Cocktail & Bartending Book

  • 101 Cocktails to Try Before You Die by Francois Monti
  • A Proper Drink by Robert Simonson
  • A Spot at the Bar: Welcome to The Everleigh by Michael Madrusan & Zara Young
  • Difford's Guide to Cocktails #12 by Simon Difford
  • Regarding Cocktails by Sasha Petraske with Georgette Moger-Petraske
  • Shake.Stir.Sip. by Kara Newman
  • Smuggler's Cove: Exotic Cocktails, Rum, and the Cult of Tiki by Martin & Rebecca Cate
  • The Canon Cocktail Book by Jamie Boudreau and James O. Fraioli
  • The Complete Cocktail Manual by Lou Bustamante
  • The Waldorf Astoria Bar Book by Frank Caiafa


Best New Spirits Book

Note: There were not enough qualified nominations to fill this category.

  • Amaro by Brad Thomas Parsons
  • Bourbon: The Rise, Fall and Rebirth of An American Whiskey by Fred Minnick
  • Colonial Spirits: A Toast to our Drunken History by Steven Grasse
  • Le whisky c'est pas sorcier by Mickaël Guidot (Author) & Yannis Varoutsikos (Illustrations)
  • TEQUILA COCKTAILS by Brian Van Flandern
  • Whiskey: A Spirited Story with 75 Classic and Original Cocktails by Michael Dietsch

Global Categories


Best Bar Mentor

  • Alex Kratena
  • David Wondrich
  • Don Lee
  • Doug Frost
  • Ivy Mix & Lynnette Marrero
  • Jackson Cannon
  • Julio Cabrera
  • Paul McGee
  • Tomas Estes
  • Zdenek Kastanek


Best New Spirit or Cocktail Ingredient*

  • Altos Anejo (Mexico)
  • Ancho Reyes Verde (Mexico)
  • Braemble Gin Liqueur (Scotland, UK)
  • Del Maguey Single Village Mezcal PUEBLA, San Pablo Ameyaltepec Wild Papalote (Mexico)
  • ITALICUS - Rosolio di Bergamotto (Italy)
  • J. Rieger & Co. Caffe Amaro (United States)
  • Luxardo Bitter Bianco (Italy)
  • Plantation O.F.T.D. (Cognac, France)
  • Rieger's Monogram Whiskey, 2017 Olorso Bota (United States)
  • Shrubb J.M. (Martinique)
  • The Bitter Truth Olive Bitters (Germany)


World’s Best Cocktail Menu

  • American Bar at The Savoy (London, UK)
  • Beaufort Bar at The Savoy (London, UK)
  • Bitter & Twisted Cocktail Parlour (Phoenix, United States)
  • BlackTail (New York, United States)
  • Mace (New York, United States)
  • Pouring Ribbons (New York, United States)
  • The Dead Rabbit (New York, United States)
  • The Drifter (Chicago, United States)
  • Tippling Club (Singapore)
  • Trick Dog (San Francisco, United States)


World’s Best Spirits Selection

  • American Bar at The Savoy (London, UK)
  • ATLAS (Singapore)
  • canon: whiskey and bitters emporium (Seattle, WA)
  • Old Lightning (Los Angeles, United States)
  • Seven Grand (Los Angeles, United States)
  • Sexy Fish (London, UK)
  • Sweet Liberty Drinks & Supply Company (Miami, United States)
  • Swift (London, UK)
  • The Baxter Inn (Sydney, Australia)
  • The Office (Chicago, United States)
  • Whitechapel (San Francisco, United States)


For a list of past Spirited Award winners, please click here.


About Tales of the Cocktail

Founded in 2002, Tales of the Cocktail has grown from a small gathering of cocktail lovers into the world’s premier cocktail festival. Each year the international spirits industry is welcomed to New Orleans for a week of seminars, tastings, networking events and much more. With 200+ annual events developed specifically for bartenders, distillers and other spirits professionals, Tales of the Cocktail is the industry’s annual meeting place for the exchanging of new ideas, products and techniques. Tales of the Cocktail also produces a number of other events and programs such as Tales of the Cocktail on Tour, Tales 365, Tales of the Toddy and Daiquiri Season, all to further the mission of supporting and growing the international cocktail community.

About the New Orleans Culinary and Cultural Preservation Society

Tales of the Cocktail is produced by the New Orleans Culinary & Cultural Preservation Society (NOCCPS), a non-profit organization committed to supporting, promoting and growing the cocktail industry in New Orleans and around the world. In addition to offering opportunities to learn and acquire new skills through Tales of the Cocktail events and Tales 365, the NOCCPS invests the proceeds back into the spirits industry. Since 2008, the NOCCPS has invested more than $886,000 into programs like the Cocktail Apprentice Program, a tuition reimbursement program, the Apprentice medical aid fund, educational scholarships and a new health and wellness program for members of the hospitality industry.

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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