Boutique call: preview of Boutique Bar Show London

Rivoli Bar cocktailA preview of the seminars and other features at this year’s Boutique Bar Show in London on September 24 and 25

Leading bartenders will share insights and knowledge as part of a packed programme of events and experiences at this year’s Boutique Bar Show in London. Bars taking part include the Rivoli Bar at The Ritz, Opium in Chinatown and Hawksmoor while the event will also host the final of the Masters of Maraschino cocktail competition and other features aimed at bar owners and bartenders.

The annual show takes place on September 24 and 25, bringing new and interesting spirits, liqueurs and beers under one roof for the bar industry to learn about and sample. This year, the exhibition will be in a new location in Victoria House in Bloomsbury Square.

New features for this year include the Craft Distillers Village, hosted by the newly formed Craft Distillers Alliance. This offers a chance to discover artisan products from around the world including whiskies from Taiwan, Australia and Texas.

Throughout the day, the team from Hawksmoor in Spitalfields will offer cocktails under the banner of “Breakfast drinks to forty winks”, including their take on “anti-fogmatics”, the reviving concoctions for sipping before 11am recommended by the Savoy’s legendary 1920s head bartender, Harry Craddock.

Luis Simoes and his team will take visitors through what has been happening at the Rivoli Bar at the Ritz in London after he took over as bar manager nearly two years ago. Tasked with restoring it to one of the world’s leading bars, they have revived the cocktail offering and worked on perfecting many of the classic cocktails such as the Manhattan.

Intimate bartender sessions on cocktail, syrup and tonic creations will be run over the two days by the team from Opium in Chinatown, which was opened at the end of last year by Eric Yu with bartender and consultant Dre Masso. Under the stewardship of Esther Medina Cuesta, they will be recreating the bartender’s table that is on the top floor of the venue.

Planning is under way on The Fourth Space – a “top secret” work in progress between drinks consultancy Soulshakers and Bespoke Barware, the designer and supplier of innovative and unusual drinking vessels.

Details of the drinks brands being showcased at the show can be found at New products being introduced in the UK will include John E Fitzgerald Larceny Bourbon, which was launched in the US last year by Heaven Hill Distilleries. It is a wheated bourbon at 46% ABV. It is part of the portfolio of distributor Eaux de Vie which will present other products including premium Capel pisco from Chile.

The show is open from 11am to 5pm both days. Register for free at

Masters of Maraschino

The Boutique Bar Show will host the final of the Masters of Maraschino competition, organised each year to find the best new serves for Luxardo Maraschino liqueur. On September 24, representatives of the UK Bartenders Guild and Matteo Luxardo from Luxardo will decide the winner of the top prize of a visit to the scenic home of Luxardo in Torreglia, Italy, plus a vintage bottle of Luxardo Maraschino. Entries needed to be submitted by September 1.

Cocktails in the City

The day after Boutique Bar Show, Victoria House Basement Block will be transformed into Cocktails in the City – a showcase of 30 of London’s best bars, aimed at consumers. With over 1,000 people expected, it is the first time the event has been held in London after its success in Manchester, Edinburgh, Leeds and Bristol.

Each event hosts the cities’ top bars partnered by leading UK spirit brands to provide visitors with an interactive cocktail-making experience allowing them to learn more about the art of cocktails, discover drinks brands and learn more about the bars in their area.

The ticketed event, from 6pm on September 26, will bring together the likes of The Ritz’s Rivoli Bar, Harvey Nichols Fifth Floor Bar, Hawksmoor in Spitalfields, MeatLiquor, Off Broadway, The Lost Angel, Old Bengal Bar, Bam Bou, Wahaca, The Club at The Ivy, The Rum Kitchen, London Cocktail Club and Bodean’s. Visit

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