The Best Cocktail Festivals In The World

Cocktails festivals seem to be the newest trend to indulge in. Bars, restaurants and distributors from around the globe pull out all the stops to showcase creations made from premium spirits. Finding a good cocktail festival is like finding that hidden bar or restaurant that you don’t really want to tell anyone about.

Here’s a list of cocktail-focused festivals from around the world that you can attend.

Tales of the Cocktail, New Orleans

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In a five day celebration of cocktails and culture, Tales of the Cocktail brings together some of the most well-known, respected minds in mixology. This annual event takes place towards the end of July in New Orleans and features cocktail tastings, mixing competitions, dinners, field trips to local distilleries and seminars by top mixologists. Meant for professionals and enthusiasts alike, it’s a great opportunity to network or to pick the brains of your favorite mixologists. 

The Hukilau, Fort Lauderdale

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Celebrating the iconic tiki lifestyle once a year in June, this 5-day cocktail party brings lovers of tiki culture together from across the globe. Learn to how to shake up your favorite exotic concoctions from renowned mixologists, attend symposiums to talk tiki with the experts and party Polynesian-style till the sun comes up. 

Art of the Cocktail, Victoria

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Generally held in October, Art of the Cocktail is one of the biggest cocktail parties on the West Coast of Canada. This one-night-only event celebrates the best in locally-sourced spirits and trendsetting cocktails all under one roof. With over 40 exhibitors and 60 spirits being served, the festival offers guided tastings and hands-on opportunities to learn the tricks of making the best cocktails at home.

SA Cocktail Week, Cape Town

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SA Cocktail Week is a week-long festival dedicated to crafted cocktails and the very best of South Africa’s bar scene. The “Grand Opening Street Party” kicks off the celebrations where some of the country’s most premium bars, brands and industry role players come together in one place to shake up tantalizing cocktails and introduce enthusiasts to the latest trends, both locally and worldwide.

Paris Cocktail Week

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Known for inventing cocktails, the French capital is putting its best boozy foot forward during Paris Cocktail Week. Towards the end of January, 50 cocktail bars across the city are offering special concoctions at a reduced price. Each establishment offers two unique drinks, one alcoholic and the other non-alcoholic, at 30 percent off from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m.

Singapore Cocktail Festival

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Take your taste buds on an intoxicating adventure, with the artisanal concoctions on display at the Singapore Cocktail Festival. The annual revelry is a weeklong celebration of alcohol and cocktail-making, with the best local and international bartenders bringing you a host of collaborations, shake-up sessions and communal events.

London Cocktail Week

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London Cocktail Week is a city-wide festival run by DrinkUp London, which sees bars come together to celebrate the capital’s mixology scene. Taking place in October each year, more than 300 bars across London partakes in the 7-day event, making it the biggest cocktail festival in the world. It’s a great chance to visit a new bar and try a new cocktail, spirit or flavour without hitting your bank balance.

Melbourne Cocktail Festival

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Take a deep dive into Australia’s cocktail culture and celebrate the bars, bartenders, suppliers and makers that help to make Melbourne so great. The festival unites venues across the city and enlists some of the most notable names in the industry to engage with visitors and locals alike. The week-long event offers a lineup of workshops, guided tours, tastings, seminars, art installations and activations – all centred around the art of the cocktail.

San Antonio Cocktail Conference, Texas

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Named one of the best cocktail festivals out there, this Texan gathering is all you need if cocktails are the first love of your life. Each year the San Antonio Cocktail Conference brings together top bartenders and cocktail enthusiasts for educational seminars, guided tastings and cocktail parties. The coolest part of it all is that festival donates all of it’s profits to a non-profit that works to empower underprivileged kids! 

Istanbul Cocktail Festival

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Over the past couple of years, Istanbul’s cocktail scene has come to full fruition, with talented mixologists making classics as well as signature drinks. Partnering with some of the city’s top bars, the Istanbul Cocktail Festival will answer all questions about cocktails and will even teach you how to make your favourites.

Florence Cocktail Week

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Organised by Paola Mencarelli and Lorenzo Nigro, the Florence Cocktail Week, which takes place in May, features masterclasses, roundtables and tasting sessions, giving professionals and enthusiasts alike the opportunity to try new flavours and creations. The 7-day event highlights specialty cocktails at more than 20 bars across the city and Tuscany.

Liquid Market Cocktail Festival, Vienna

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If sipping on a selection of cocktails in the shadow of an imperial palace sounds like your kind of thing, you might like to visit the Liquid Market cocktail festival. The revelry brings together dozens of bars from Vienna, Austria and abroad in a mighty cornucopia of cocktail creativity. The festival’s success means Liquid Market now spans three days. In fact, such is its popularity that it’s spread to another city. The first Liquid Market in Linz took place in 2019.

Edinburgh Cocktail Week

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Over 70 of the city’s top bars are taking part in the annual event and each has created a bespoke signature cocktail for the occasion. The Edinburgh Cocktail Week has grown into the biggest cocktail festival outside of London, attracting over 15,000 local and international cocktail lovers. Throughout the week, the village is filled with pop up bars and the festival offers a series of masterclasses, live music and entertainment.

Nairobi Cocktail Festival

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Experience more than 40 cocktail tastings from the best mixologists paired with delicious gourmet bites and appetizers at the Nairobi Cocktail Festival. Music is a key ingredient at this event, so expect non-stop electrifying tunes with people dancing away November and welcoming December.

Cyprus Cocktail Festival, Nicosia

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Cyprus Cocktail Festival takes place in October at the Nicosia Municipal Garden. Sixteen top bars from Greece and Cyrus serves up their signature cocktails at this one night only event in Nicosia.