The Irish Craft Cocktail Awards: Industry voting 15-30th October, 2018
The Irish Craft Cocktail Awards (ICCA) were founded in 2014, as a not-for-profit event that would “celebrate the skill, training, uniqueness and artistry of craft cocktail concoction in Ireland.”
The team behind the ICCA are Kevin Hurley, Chandrika Narayanan-Mohan, and Alan Kavanagh. The awards are independent and actively support charities, with €17,262 so far raised for organisations such as Samaritans Ireland, Pieta House, and Dublin Simon Community. A breakdown of the ICCA’s charitable work can be found here.
The ICCA takes a Tales-ish approach to organising the awards, with nominations generated by a first stage of (public) voting, and a second stage of industry voting to select the eventual winners. You can apply to join the industry panel here.
Previous category winners include the Merchant Hotel (Best Cocktail Bar Ulster, 2017), Cask (Best Bar Team, 2017), Vintage Cocktail Club (Best Cocktail Bar Dublin City, 2017).
The public nomination stage is open for submissions until midnight on October 7th. The second round of industry voting runs between 15th-30th October, with the awards ceremony taking place in Dublin on Sunday 26th November.
BarLifeUK readers who live in Ireleand, or travel there to flog booze, are encouraged to get involved.
The category list
Craft Cocktail Bar of the Year
This award aims to recognize the bar that has set the highest of standards and has gone above and beyond to promote the Irish cocktail industry and craft cocktails. The menu, bar team, atmosphere and cocktail quality should all be considered.
Best Bar Team
This award aims to recognise the best collection of talent in a group or team working in an Irish cocktail bar, including bartenders, barbacks, servers and front of house. Dedication to maintaining the highest standards in professionalism, dedication, hospitality, consistency of service and high quality cocktails should all be considered.
Outstanding Cocktail Menu
This award aims to recognise the most impressive physical cocktail menu. Design, content (range of spirits and specialty cocktails), originality, diversity, research and styles of cocktails presented should all be considered.
Best New Cocktail Bar
This award aims to recognise the best cocktail bar to open in Ireland within the last 15 months. The bar will have made an immediate impact on cocktail culture and set new standards for the industry. Creativity, décor and service as well as well-executed drinks should all be considered.
Cocktail Bartender of the Year
This award aims to recognize the best bartender since December 2016. The bartender will have had the strongest influence on the cocktail industry. Innovation, experience, personality and extensive technical and practical skills and knowledge should all be considered.
Best Hotel Cocktail Bar
This award aims to recognise the best hotel cocktail bar. Five-star service, consistently well-made drinks, a comfortable setting and a dedication to providing for its residents should all be taken into consideration.
Best Restaurant Cocktail Bar
This award aims to recognize the restaurant bar that is dedicated to creating a great cocktail experience for their dining guests. Approach to aperitif and digestive drinks, how well they work with the kitchen to pair cocktails with food, as well as general bartending and mixing excellence should all be taken into consideration.
Craft Cocktail Bar of the Year (Regional)
This award aims to recognize the bar that has set the highest of standards and has gone above and beyond to promote the cocktail industry and craft cocktails. The menu, bar team, atmosphere and cocktail quality should all be considered. There will be an award for Craft Cocktail Bar of the Year for Dublin City, Leinster, Munster, Connaght and Ulster. These bars will also be eligible to win the Craft Cocktail Bar of the Year Award.
Irish Craft Cocktail Industry Legend of the Year
This award aims to recognise an individual who, in their professional life, played a crucial role in raising the quality of bars, bartenders, and cocktails and who has over the years made a stellar contribution to the Irish cocktail Industry. Induction into the Irish Craft Cocktail Awards Hall of Fame is the prize for the recipient of this award. Taking into consideration the suggestions from the industry, The Irish Craft Cocktail Awards committee have chosen the recipient of this award.
All images: The Irish Craft Cocktail Awards