Tales organisers say the award is an industry badge of honour, recognised as one of the most prestigious prizes in the spirits world, judged by some of the cocktail industry’s most respected figureheads.
Warner accepted the award from Julie Reiner and Ivy Mix (2015 Winners of Best International Bar Mentor and Best American Bartender respectively) in New Orleans last Saturday (July 23), winning in a category that included Dean Callan of Monkey Shoulder, Camille Vidal of St-Germain and self-styled global rum ambassador Ian Burrell.
Warner has represented the brand across the world for 12 years through initiatives such as the Chivas Masters cocktail competition. The 2016 global final was held last month in Shanghai.
His personal contribution is said to range from selection of industry recognised judges, the evolution of the Chivas Masters platform – which now brings together finalists from different cultures and countries to ‘win the right way’ as a team – and working with the Pernod Ricard team in China to curate and host the finalists.
Warner said: “Winning the title of Best International Brand Ambassador at the Spirited Awards is a huge honour for me and will definitely go down as one of my career highlights. The Tales of the Cocktail festival holds a very special place in my heart; I have visited every year for the past 7 years with Chivas Regal.
“The scotch whisky category needs to be recognised more and I am so proud to be able to stand tall on the international stage in the country in which Chivas Regal was launched, being acknowledged among such a talented pool of ambassadors alongside so many industry icons. An occasion I will never forget,” said Warner.