Bars and restaurants across Winchester in Hampshire are set to take part in the city’s first week-long celebration of cocktails in February next year.
Winchester Cocktail Week is being organised by Gary Whiter and Marcus Roe of local food and drink blog Cabinet Rooms with members of the city’s business improvement district (BID).
Running from February 1 to 7, it is already set to feature 25 venues, from bars and restaurants to cafés and quirky retail spaces, hosting tastings, masterclasses, pop-ups and parties.
It will include a competition for bartenders from Winchester’s bars and restaurants to put their cocktail skills to the test for a chance to win the first-ever Winchester Cup for their venue and a prize for themselves.
Consumers will buy wristbands to have access to events and tap into offers including special £4 cocktails available at participating bars throughout the week.
Supported by an extensive marketing campaign, it aims to draw people into Winchester from the surrounding area, benefiting from direct rail links to Basingstoke, Southampton, Bournemouth and Portsmouth. It is also less than an hour by train from London Waterloo.
Gary said: “Anecdotal evidence from local food producers suggests that Winchester’s population is more adventurous and discerning than in other local areas and we therefore feel this is a great location to try something new and exciting.
“There is already a strong ‘foodie’ scene in the area, and we think Winchester Cocktail Week will help to position the city as the south’s gastronomic hub outside of London.”