Southern Comfort Cocktail Competition


It’s here again folks!  Last year over 100 bartenders around the UK captured ‘the charm of the South’ with their Southern Comfort cocktail creations. This year we introduce The Southern Showdown 2017!

Enter your Southern Comfort Cocktail creation for your chance to WIN a trip to New Orleans – home of the cocktail and birthplace of Southern Comfort!

The 2017 Southern Showdown is challenging you to create a drink inspired by the cocktails New Orleans is famous for.  These signature cocktails have played their part in crafting the vibrant cocktail scene of today and are in every bartender’s handbook.  Show us how you capture the ‘Spirit Of New Orleans’ in the heart and soul of your drink.

The most impressive will be invited to attend one of 6 regional heats across the UK. Regional champions will come together in London to compete in the grand final battle to win their place on a trip to New Orleans.

Submit your Southern Comfort recipe, photos and social content by the 16th June!

Key Dates

April 20th – Competition opens for entries

June 16th – Final deadline for entries

July 17th to 28th – Regional Heats

August – 2nd – London Final

Mid/Late September – Prize trip to New Orleans

To Enter, you must:

  1. Stock Southern Comfort in your venue
  2. Submit your own Southern Comfort inspired cocktail recipe and method and be prepared to present in person at one of our regional heats.
    • Must contain at least 35ml of Southern Comfort.
  3. Bonus points: Tell us through the power of Social Media – why you have been Inspired by ‘The Spirit of New Orleans’.
    • Whether photos, video content, soundbites or social tweets, all will be accepted. Just make sure you hashtag #SouthernShowdown17
    • If selected you can do this right up until the competition Regional Heats 17th July. 2 Points per post (Max of 25 points).

Judging criteria and hints:

New Orleans is not only the winning trip location, but also the birthplace of Southern Comfort, how does your entry embody the Crescent City and ‘Spirit Of New Orleans’?

To Be Announced. Judges will also be providing ingredients and asking you to present one other New Orleans Classic. So make sure you dig out those handbooks and study up on those famous recipes.

Southern Hospitality:  Last years’ finalists have often been called upon to be involved in other Southern Comfort projects throughout the year; bar take overs, photoshoots, judging other competitions and promotions, so personality will go a long way.

Bonus Points: Regional Finalists can gain lots of bonus points through in venue promotion and Social Media participation

Online Entry Criteria – Total 100 Points Regional Final Criteria – Total 100 points
Creativity – 20 points Creativity – 20 points
Answer to set questions – 10 points Presentation – 20 points
Taste – 30 points Taste – 30 points
Method – 10 points Technique – 10 points
Saleability – 20 points Saleability – 10 points
Appearance – 10 points Appearance – 10 points

For detailed competition rules click here

Official “Southern Showdown” Southern Comfort Cocktail Competition 2017

Terms and Conditions


  1. Only open to United Kingdom residents aged 18 or over, excluding employees of Hi-Spirits Ltd.
  2. Entries should be submitted online at the following link:
  3. Enter between 18.00 on April 21st and by 23.59 on the 16th June 2017 (“Promotional Period”)
  4. No purchase necessary, however cocktails need to include at least 35ml of Southern Comfort Original 35%ABV.
  5. One entry per person during the promotional period, maximum of three entries per venue.
  6. Entries must meet the entry criteria and abide by the rules of the competition.
  7. Entries must be in the form of a long or short drink containing a minimum of 35ml of Southern Comfort.
  8. All entrant’s drinks must be entered with full specifications and photographs and answer the two submission form questions.
  9. Any images submitted must have been created and owned by you, the entrant. Any ideas or recipes submitted in whatever form must be the sole and unique work of you, the entrant.
  10. Participants must submit a recipe for a Southern Comfort Cocktail and explain the rationale behind their submission.
  11. Each entries venue of employment must stock and sell Southern Comfort.
  12. Six Regional Heats will be held; Edinburgh, London, Bristol, Nottingham, Manchester, Newcastle between 17rd and 28th of July.
  13. One Grand Final will be held in London on August 2nd. Organisers reserve the right to change this date due to any unforeseen circumstances.
  14. Successful candidates will be invited to showcase their entry at the Regional Heats
  15. At the Regional Heats, each competitor must make two drinks in front of the judges:

i – First drink to the exact recipe submitted at entry.

Ii – The Second drink required will be a ‘true New Orleans staple cocktail’ and announced alongside those invited to take part in the Regional Heats on 23rd June.

  1. If Regional Heat competitors cannot be clearly determined after their initial entry, Hi-Spirits representatives will visit entrants to confirm who will go through to the respective Regional Heats; all entrants must be prepared for this occasion.


  1. Stage One Prizes: Invitations to the Southern Showdown Regional Heat to showcase their cocktail in July 2017. Travel expenses not provided.
  2. Stage Two Prizes: The 1st place winner of each Regional Heat will be invited to attend the Grand Final in London on 2nd August 2017 (1 nights), travel and accommodation included.
  3. Winner, 2nd and 3rd place of the Grand Final will be given tickets to New Orleans. We will also have one extra ticket as wildcard for ‘Best Social Campaign’ (of those taking part in the Grand Final). Accommodation and travel provided by Southern Comfort.
  4. 2nd and 3rd place of each regional final will win a personalised Southern Comfort bar kit
  5. Prizes are non-transferable, non-refundable and cannot be exchanged for any alternatives in whole or in part. The promoter reserves the right to provide an alternative prize or reward (as applicable) of equal or great value in the event of unforeseen circumstances.


  1. Entries must be submitted no later than 23.59 on the 16th June 2017.
  2. Successful finalists will be informed no later than Friday 23th June, 2017.
  3. The Regional Heats will be held between the 17rd and 28th of July 2017
  4. The Grand Final in London will take place on August 2nd 2017
  5. The New Orleans 4-5 day trip will take place on dates between the 18th Sept and 2nd October


  1. Recipes must contain a minimum of 35ml Southern Comfort.
  2. Ingredients may be measured using a jigger or similar measure or freely poured.


  1. Recipe entered must be available when requested at the individuals place of employment.
  2. All Regional Heat competitors must have their recipe featured in their venue.

Drinks & Preparation

  1. For the Regional Heat the drink(s) must be assembled in front of the judges to show technique and ingredients.
  2. Competitors must supply their own bartending utensils (shaker, bar spoon, strainer etc.) and any specialist ingredients or modifiers.
  3. Southern Comfort will be provided.
  4. Cocktails may be presented in any shape of glass, cup or other hygienic and safe receptacle. Note; points are awarded for presentation.
  5. Drinks may be served straight-up, or over cubed, cracked or crushed ice.


  1. Winners of Stage One will be selected by: All drinks entered online for the competition will be judged and scored with the following criteria and weighting – highest scoring entries will be selected for the Regional Finals:
Judging Criteria Total 100 Points
Creativity 20 points
Answers to set questions 10 points
Taste 30 points
Method 10 points
Saleability 20 points
Appearance 10 points
  1. Winners of Stage Two will be selected by: All drinks presented in the Regional Heats will be judged and scored with the following criteria and weighting:
Judging Criteria Total 100 Points
Creativity 20 points
Presentation 20 points
Taste 30 points
Technique 10 points
Saleability 10 points
Appearance 10   points
  1. An additional 25 bonus points can be awarded to each individual participating in the Regional Heats for venue and social media contribution:
    1. In Venue Promotion – (maximum of 15 bonus points) are available in both the heats and the final round for competitors who wish to promote their cocktail in their venue between dates of submission and regional finals. Bespoke menu inserts or feature boards are available on request. Examples:
      1. Menu listing: 15 points
      2. Feature – insert / board: 10 points
    2. Social Media Posts – (maximum of 25 bonus points) will be given for social media posts during the competition period
      1. 2 points will be given for each post relating to the cocktail or venue with the tag @SouthernComfortUK and hashtag #SouthernShowdown17
      2. Further points based on social media content can be awarded at the Judge’s discretion
    3. Winners of Stage Two will be selected by: All drinks presented in the Grand Final will be judged and scored with the following criteria and weighting:
Judging Criteria Total 100 Points
Creativity 20 points
Presentation 20 points
Taste 30 points
Technique 10 points
Saleability 10 points
Appearance 10   points
  1. The competition organisers reserve the right to have the final decision on any matter relating to the judging of the competition.
  2. The competition organisers will appoint the panel of judges and reserve the right to replace or appoint new judges before or during the competition.
  3. The judges must remain impartial.
  4. The promoter accepts no responsibility for late, incomplete, incorrectly submitted, corrupted or misdirected entries.
  5. If an entry has been created by more than one person, entrants must pick only one person to be the entrant. The Promoter will assume that this person is empowered to act and respond on behalf of all those involved in the specific submission.


  1. Competitors must conduct themselves in a safe manner and any action considered by the organisers to endanger fellow competitors, judges or spectators will result in instant disqualification and possible ejection from the venue.
  2. Competitors are encouraged to talk to the judges while making their drink.
  3. While every reasonable effort will be made, the competition organisers cannot guarantee the safe return of glassware, equipment or any product supplied by a competitor. Therefore, competitors are advised to house their tools and product in bags/boxes which enable them to efficiently gather and hold their equipment and ingredients immediately after competing.


  1. By entering this competition, competitors agree to assign copyright of their recipe and drink name to the competition organisers. Competitors and drinks presented during the competition may be photographed (still or motion picture) by the organisers and copyright of these images for any use, including advertising, will be retained by the competition organisers.
  2. If any photo or video contains any material or elements that are not owned by the entrant and / or which are subject to the rights of third parties, and / or if any persons appear in the photo, the entrant is responsible for obtaining, prior to submission of the photo, any and all releases and consents necessary to permit the exhibition and use of the photo in the manner described in these terms and conditions without additional compensation. Failure to procure, or be able to supply on demand, any such releases or consents may result in the photo being declared invalid.

By entering this competition, you are agreeing to these terms and conditions.

Now closed

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