Student Competition

The 6th National Hospitality Student Cocktail Challenge (NHSCC) will take place on Wed 27th February, 10.30am - 1pm, at CATEX, RDS, Dublin 4.

We want all hospitality students to enjoy the experience and the challenge of this competition.

However, just to keep you all on the straight and narrow here's a few rules for you to observe. Don't forget to smile when competing, it goes a long way!!!


  1. The 6th NHSCC will take place on Wed 27th February, 10.30am - 1pm, at CATEX, RDS, Dublin 4.
  2. This annual cocktail competition is organised by the Bartenders Association of Ireland.
  3. Entry is open to students of recognized hospitality training centres e.g. Institutes of Technology.


  1. It is the responsibility of each competitor to ensure that their recipe is within the rules.
  2. In order to avail of complimentary ingredients supplied by the BAI sponsors, recipes must be received by Declan Byrne, by Tuesday 12th February 2019. Entries received after this date cannot be guaranteed and competitors/tutors should bring their ingredients.
  3. Competitors are permitted to submit a recipe for any of the following cocktail classifications:
    • Long Drink
    • Before Dinner
    • After Dinner
    • Fancy
    • Short Drink (Sour, Cobber, Daisy)
  4. Competitors shall be required to make two (2) portions of their submitted recipe.
  5. Each recipe shall contain a minimum of 1.5cl of a base spirit provided by Edward Dillon & Co. Ltd. and at least one product from our other sponsors (see product list here: See rule 2.
  6. Recipes shall contain no more than 7cls of alcoholic product(s) in total. Technical judges will closely observe this rule.
  7. The use of a measure is recommended for accurate pouring. Free pouring is not recommended.
  8. Recipes shall be expressed in centilitres, divided in respectively whole numbers (1cl, 2cl, 3cl, etc.) and/or half numbers (0.5cl, 1.5cl, 2.5cl, etc.), dashes and/or drops being the smallest quantities.
  9. Recipes should contain: At least two (2) but not more than four (4) alcoholic ingredients, the base spirit (i.e. brandy, gin, rum, vodka, whiskey, etc.) must be from the Edward Dillon & Co. Ltd. portfolio.
  10. The other ingredients must therefore be utilized as flavouring modifier (i.e. bitters, liqueurs, cocktail syrups, etc.) and stretchers (i.e. juices, sodas, etc.).
  11. A maximum of six (6) ingredients including dashes and drops is permitted.
  12. Homemade ingredients and/or infusions are NOT permitted.
  13. Competitors may choose from the following methods to prepare their cocktails: build (directly in glass), stir (mixing glass), shake (strain or double strain), or blend, muddling or a combination of the above.
  14. Competitors are required to bring their own bar utensils & equipment to prepare the cocktail. This includes ice crushers, blender, shakers, tongs, strainers, etc.
  15. Competitors are required to bring their own glassware.
  16. Dairy products are not permitted.
  17. Egg white is permitted.
  18. Heated ingredients are not permitted.
  19. Any substitutions or questionable ingredients must have the approval of the BAI President prior to competition commencement. Don’t leave it to the morning of the competition to get this approval. We expect you to be well rehearsed for the competition.
  20. Competitors must be aware of recommended retail price of their cocktail as it would appear in a cocktail menu. If you’re not sure ask your manager/tutor.
  21. Competitors must be aware of the units of alcohol contained in one portion of their cocktail.
  22. Only sponsoring brands and products will be provided for competitors use (see rule 2). Any other ingredients must be provided by the bartender and poured from a non-branded bottle or clear glass jug.
  23. Brands & products that compete with the BAI sponsors brands are not permitted for use in the competition.
  24. All cocktail decorations must be prepared in the preparation area only which may be in front of an audience and judges.
  25. Any kind of pre-fixed decorations (partly prepared elsewhere) will be taken out of the competition and the contestant involved may be penalised.
  26. The time allowed for the preparation of the cocktail decoration is fifteen (15) minutes. After this time, penalties shall be given.
  27. Food dyes shall not be allowed.
  28. Products (such as cocktail sticks, etc.) may be used to fix the garnish to the glass.
  29. Condiments such as: salt, sugar, pepper, nutmeg, cinnamon, chocolate decoration like sprinkles, sprays and citrus zest which are commonly used, shall be allowed but will count as one ingredient each.
  30. All entrants must be able to speak English.
  31. Prizes are not transferable. There is no cash alternative.
  32. Entrants must be 18 years or over.
  33. Participation confirms acceptance of these rules.
  34. Judges' decision is final and no correspondence will be entered into.

The winner will be awarded the BEST HOSPITALITY STUDENT AWARD. Trophies will be awarded to 1st, 2nd & 3rd. All participants will receive a certificate detailing their participation in the NATIONAL HOSPITALITY STUDENT COCKTAIL CHALLENGE.


  1.  Submit your entry using the online form as soon as possible but definitely before noon on Tuesday 12th February 2019..
  2. Competition date/time: Wednesday 27th Feb /  11am - 1pm.
  3. The sequence of competitors shall be announced at the competitors briefing 10.30am on the day of competition.
  4. Competitors shall present in a high class professional bartender’s uniform (without branding of any competing brands) or college uniform.
  5. Competitors must not carry any brands from drink manufacturers other than brands from our sponsors on clothing or bar equipment.
  6. Each competitor shall be limited to five (5) minutes for making their cocktails.
  7. Competitors that exceed the time limit will be penalised.
  8. At 6 mins, competitors must stop working and step back from their work station.

The BAI reserve the right to limit the entry or change the format to ensure a smooth running competition for all concerned.