By Clyde Mooney, editor Australian Hotelier

Sydney Fringe Festival teamed up with the Newtown Precinct Business Association (NPBA) to promote patronage in the area by 'capturing Newtown in a glass'.

The cocktail competition pitted hotels, bars and restaurants from the precinct in the second instalment of the Toast of Newtown, judging entries on criteria of taste, presentation and the challenge to "encapsulate Newtown".

Around a dozen venues took part, with the public encouraged to vote and five finalists emerging: Coopers Hotel, Newtown Hotel, Bloodwood, Hive Bar, and Mad Pizza e Bar.

A panel of judges including local personality Mark Ward, presenter on 2SER, went from venue to venue judging each cocktail against the key criteria.

A presentation event was held Tuesday night at local pop-up bar Eliza’s Juke Joint, with the Coopers Hotel triumphant for its "Fresh Mint Papple", made with Bombay Sapphire Gin, pear liqueur, gomme syrup, mint leaves and apple juice.

Coopers bartender Peter Groom represented the pub, carrying the hotel mantle in a district bustling with funky new small bars.

"It is a great feeling to be one of the original venues left in the always popular, and ever-changing Newtown area," said a representative for the hotel, which has attempted to remain 'the local' of Newtown throughout a period where virtually all licensed venues have had overhauls.

Sydney Fringe Festival, Sydney's independent festival for the visual and performing arts, winds up this weekend for 2013. 

The Shout Team

The leading online news service for Australia's beer, wine, spirits and hospitality industries.

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