Ireland’s Best Cocktail Bartender

The National Cocktail Championships & Bartender Awards took place on Tuesday 6th & Wednesday 7th February at Food & Bev Live in Citywest, Dublin.

This annual event is organised by the Bartenders Association of Ireland and sponsored by Edward Dillon & Co. Ltd.

Forty-two bartenders competed out of an entry of fifty-one recipes received for the championships.

Mr. Ariel Sanecki of Adare Manor Hotel, Limerick scooped the top award of National Cocktail Champion 2018 with his cocktail called Japanese Garden consisting of 40ml Star of Bombay Gin, 20ml Sake, 20ml Matcha Green Tea Syrup, 10ml Yuzu Puree, 20ml Fresh Lime Juice and 50ml Rice Milk all shaken together and decoratively presented to the judges.

Ariel will represent Ireland at the IBA World Cocktail Championships in Tallinn, Estonia, 1st-6th October 2018. He previously represented Ireland at the World Cocktail Championships in Tokyo, Japan in 2016 where he won a Silver Medal.

John Cassidy, Commercial Director, Edward Dillon & Co. Ltd. was on hand to present all the awards to the winning bartenders accompanied by Alan Kavanagh, Brands Advocacy Manager, Edward Dillon & Co. Ltd.

This year the Bartenders Association of Ireland invited Mr. Hidetsugu Ueno from Bar High Five, Ginza, Tokyo in Japan to judge the National Cocktail Championships at Food & Bev Live.

Hidetsugu won the title of International Bartender of the Year at Tales of the Cocktail in New Orleans, USA. He is famous for his diamonds carved from ice and his unique Japanese style of bartending.

On closing the championships, Mr. Declan Byrne, President made a special presentation to Mr. Hidetsugu Ueno in appreciation of his visit to Ireland.

Finishing in 2nd & 3rd place at the National Cocktail Championships 2018 were Federico Destro, The Blind Pig Speakeasy and Oisin Kelly, The Little Pig Speakeasy, Dublin.

Japanese Garden
40ml Star of Bombay Gin
20ml Sake
20ml Matcha Green Tea Syrup
10ml Yuzu Puree
20ml Fresh Lime Juice
50ml Rice Milk

Ariel Sanecki, National Cocktail Champion of Ireland 2018 with Declan Byrne, President Bartenders Association of Ireland, Hidetsugu Ueno, VIP Guest Judge from Bar High Five, Tokyo and John Cassidy, Commercial Director, Edward Dillon & Co. Ltd. sponsor of the National Cocktail Championships & Bartender Awards.

2nd Place - Frederico Destro, The Blind Pig Speakeasy, Dublin
Moonlight Shadow

40ml Bacardi Carta Blanca Rum
15ml Amaretto Liqueur
15ml Basil Syrup
15ml Lemon Juice
10ml Egg White
Dash Plum Bitters



3rd Place - Oisin Kelly, The Little Pig Speakeasy, Dublin
All Year Round
20ml Bacardi Carta Oro
20ml Port
20ml Falernum
20ml Fresh Lemon Juice
5ml Absinthe