london cocktail week 2023

London Cocktail Week adds new initiatives for 2023

05 September, 2023

London Cocktail Week has unveiled the Bartender Knowledge Exchange programme to help educate both local and international bartenders as part of a series of new initiatives in 2023 aimed at supporting the hospitality industry.

Heading into its 14th year, the festival is also adding the option for bars which directly sell LCW wristbands to consumers, to retain all revenue and amplify their earnings.

For the Bartender Knowledge Exchange programme, LCW will work directly with the host venue to help create the ultimate education experience that best showcases their bar. One example is a back of house pre-shift tour named ‘The Seat At The Bar’ - a bookable experience for bartenders to sit and watch the host bar in action, as well as exclusive tastings and talks with bar owners and managers.

While the bartenders who book the Seat at The Bar programme will be expected to pay for their drinks, this exclusive opportunity will give young bartenders from around the world a chance to meet the host team and get first hand experience of how they work. Bars taking part include; The Savoy, Soma and Swift with more still to confirm.

Venues taking part in the Bartender Knowledge Exchange programme range from five star hotel bars, specialist bars, Michelin-starred restaurant bars and some of London’s best neighbourhood bars.

Sexy Fish is offering a bar outside of the UK that has never done a takeover in London to enter a competition to take over its venue for one night only during London Cocktail Week on Monday 16 October, with all travel costs covered. To enter, bar teams must submit this form and upload a one-minute video to Instagram, tagging @sexyfishlondon, explaining why their bar should be chosen.

Another example is ‘Connaught - Behind The Scenes’, where bartenders can spend time with the bar’s team behind the scenes as they get ready for service. Swift Borough and Swift Shoreditch are also offering the ‘Pick Your Battles’ experience, where bartenders learn the basics of hand cracking ice to order. This hands-on masterclass will be run daily in both venues during London Cocktail Week at 2.30pm. A £10 deposit (redeemable at the bar) will be required and bookings can be made via

As London Cocktail Week begins just after BCB Berlin, another opportunity which the festival is offering, in partnership with The Hoxton, is exclusive room rates in venues in both London and Berlin, at The Hoxton Shepherd’s Bush and The Hoxton Charlottenburg.

Throughout the lifetime of the festival, LCW has been committed to injecting revenue into the night time economy through the sale of signature cocktails in participating venues. Over the last 13 years, more than £4m have been run through the tills of its partner venues, with bars always retaining 100% of the price of the drinks.

Now, in 2023, this commitment is being taken further with partner venues now able to keep all of the revenue of the £15 wristbands, which are provided free of charge . This has been made possible by London Cocktail Week’s long standing partner The Whisky Exchange, which has committed to support the festival and ensure it is continuing to give back and support venues while also aiming to be a global example of a cocktail festival.

London Cocktail Week 2023 is taking place between 12-22nd October and, as always, there will be a full programme of national and international takeovers taking place, offering guests the opportunity to experience bars and their drinks offerings from all corners of the globe.

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