Last weekend saw the third running of the Australian Drinks Festival, previously Top Shelf, with visitors and exhibitors enjoying another successful show.

The premium drinks festival took place over Saturday and Sunday at the Royal Exhibition Hall in Carlton, Melbourne, with a wide range of beer, wine and spirits exhibitors for visitors to see as well as a strong line-up of educational masterclasses and presentations.

Event Director, Paul Wootton, told b&c: “It was another successful year for the Festival and the feedback from visitors has been amazing, with many posting online how much they enjoyed the show. This year, the introduction of live music and cocktail masterclasses helped create more of a festival atmosphere as did great new pop-up bars from the likes of Jameson, Hendrick’s, Cointreau, Beluga Vodka, Fine Wine Partners, Auchentoshan and Star of Bombay.

“The boutique spirits alley again proved very popular – throughout the whole weekend it was so busy it was almost impossible to move down there. The presentations and seminars were also very well attended.

“The type of visitor we attract to the show is very important to us, especially where there is so much alcohol freely available. You have to strike a balance – between getting numbers through the door and attracting visitors that are genuinely interested in discovering and learning about premium drinks. By and large, we get that spot on.

“I’m pleased too that new exhibitors to the show have already given us very positive feedback with many surprised at the quality and engagement of visitors – and many telling us they’ll be back again next year.

“Finally, I’d like to thank our event partners Sweet & Chilli for again looking after our feature areas faultlessly and in an exceptionally professional manner – and to thank my whole team for all their hard work in pulling off another great show.”

Exhibitor Tomas Vikario from Monin added: “It’s been a fantastic weekend. Saturday was great and although it was a bit slower on Sunday we made some good contacts so we are happy.”

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