Belfast bartenders win whiskey trip
A group of Belfast bartenders are sharing their passion for Irish whiskey following a trip to the Irish Whiskey Academy at the Midleton Distillery in Co Cork - best known for producing Jameson.
A team from Belfast won the trip through Irish whiskey brand Powers Whiskey Wisdom Distilled Challenge, which is an industry competition open to bartenders from right across Northern Ireland.
The competition - devised by drinks company Dillon Bass - featured a series of challenges and sought to find the top bartenders in the region.
A team from Bullitt Belfast made up of Alex Johnston, Conor Smith and Frankie Cosgrove were named the winners, clinching the prize.
They won the immersive 48-hour experience at Midleton's Irish Whiskey Academy.
The winning bartenders were treated to the Academy's 'Enthusiasts Package', which includes behind the scenes access and a packed programme led by Midleton's experts, showing how whiskey is crafted from grain to glass.
Bullitt bartender Conor Smith said the experience would help him talk to customers about whiskey
"Our time at The Irish Whiskey Academy provided a great insight into the craft of producing great Irish whiskey," he said.
"The time, effort and passion that goes into the process is just mind-blowing and this is represented in the delicate flavours that exist in each bottle of Powers.
"Back in Belfast, we are excited to use this experience to explore how we can develop these flavours to create exciting new cocktails, or just simply use our knowledge to advise our customers."
Belfast whiskey enthusiast and blogger Stuart Irvine acted as judge and joined the bartenders on the trip, alongside Powers Irish Whiskey ambassador, Joe Magowan.