After many years of evolution, Tipsy Texan and the Austin Food & Wine Alliance are thrilled to present the 2017 Official Drink of Austin competition embodying the spirit of the Austin cocktail culture.

Winning venue will win the right to serve the Official Drink of Austin for the entire year following the competition, and to serve as the Ambassador of the Official Drink at various events throughout the year.


Qualification: Participating bars must be located in the Greater Austin area and hold a mixed beverage permit. They can be a stand-alone bar, or a bar that operates inside a restaurant or hotel.

  • Submissions are limited to one recipe per venue.
  • It is essential that cocktails utilize local produce, flavors and highlight local culinary traditions.
  • Dessert drinks are not permitted in this competition.
  • If your drink calls for a spirit that is not involved but is parallel with a participating spirit we will ask you to please substitute once sponsorships are confirmed.
  • Bars will use the form provided to submit recipe information. The form requests cocktail name, ingredients, method, type of glass and type of ice, if applicable.
  • Recipes must be submitted online no later than midnight on Monday, March 20, 2017.
  • Finalists will be contacted by Monday, March 27, 2017.


Eight finalist teams will be selected. Once selected, you will be contacted by an Official Drink of Austin representative to ascertain your needs for the live event on Thursday, May 4, 2017, at Fair Market.

All specific products, equipment and other needs for finalists must be submitted by 5 pm  Thursday, April 6 to lillian@austinfoodwinealliance.org.

Each bar selected to compete in the live event will send a five-member team to represent the establishment. Additional team member badges will be available for purchase.

Batches (or mise en place if you are not batching) will need to be sufficient enough to serve 600 2oz sample portions. Base spirits, modifying spirits, readily available fruits and juices will be provided unless it is an unusual item (such as a house-made syrup or obscure liqueur) in which case please provide your own.

All garnishes must be edible/drinkable and prepared by contestant; fresh produce garnish ingredients specified in the finalists’ recipes will be provided. Straws and toothpicks are to be provided by participant teams.

Bar tools will be provided by the competing team unless prior arrangements are made. Contestants are requested to use non-branded tools unless provided by participating sponsors.

For presenting cocktails to the judging team during the actual competition portion of the event, it is advised that teams bring their own glassware. Plastic cups will be provided for sampling cocktails to the public.

For the first round of live judging, each team will present their cocktail to the judges. Time for presenting your drink to the judges shall not exceed 7 minutes.

Each judge will score the drink separately and then assign a total score to the team. People’s Choice points will then be added to each team’s scores. The two teams with the highest scores will prepare their drinks to be made in the final round, which will take place live on stage.

From the final round, the winning recipe will be declared the Official Drink of Austin for the year. The winning bar team will be featured at a few of the Austin Food & Wine Alliance’s events throughout the year. By submitting your cocktail recipe you agree to your participation at AFWA events if your drink is selected as the Official Drink of Austin. 

Participation at these events is required: 

2017 Wine & Swine – November
2017 Grant Awards – December
2018 Live Fire! – Spring 2018

Contestants need to submit their recipes online through our website by Tuesday, March 16. If you have any questions, please email lillian@austinfoodwinealliance.org.