Australia’s best bartenders are more than just mixologists; they are storytellers, custodians of tradition, and innovators pushing the boundaries of their craft. From Sydney’s cosmopolitan allure to Melbourne’s artistic soul, from Brisbane’s carefree vibe to Perth’s coastal splendor, each bartender weaves the essence of their city and local produce into every cocktail they craft. With each pour they create experiences that can make that special night just a bit more than you expected…often the driving force behind the most successful bars. Australia has built a reputation of international envy, a testament to the country’s fusion of cultures, landscapes, and flavours, so how do you find the best bartending talent? You ask a bartender of course.

Millie Tang, The Gresham, Brisbane

Ten years ago Drinks World magazine, a magazine for bartenders across Australia, Hong Kong, Singapore and Dubai, started asking brand ambassadors and bartenders who they thought were the best at their craft and often then answers were quite surprising. Traditionally the top bartending talent has been unearthed via cocktail competitions where bartenders are asked to perform in front of a panel of judges; expected to make their perfectly measured drinks with a steady hand and smile. The demonstration of their skill s also requires the reciting of inspirational stories and knowledge of the ingredients (mostly focused on a sponsors product). Unsurprisingly this isn’t for everyone, no matter how attractive the prizes have become. Just because competing isn’t your thing, that doesn’t mean you’re not a good, or even great, bartender, which was the inspiration for Drinks World magazine to seek out the bartenders own opinion on who is in the top echelons of bartending talent.

Adam Dow – Head of Beverage, Ivy, Sydney

If you’re interested in following the process this year get onto the instagram page for @t25bartenders. Voting has started and the top 100 bartenders will be announced on Friday this week (August 11). They will also be posted here.

After the Top100 Bartenders are announced another round of voting occurs and we bring the number down to the Top25 Bartenders in Australia – who are invited to create a special cocktail inspired edition of Drinks World, feature their drinks in their bars and strive to become the Top bartender in Australia as voted by their peers.

And we promise to share the inside scoop with you right here on