Who is the best Black Bartender in the nation?

Black Restaurant Week is searching to find the best black bartender in the nation. We are hosting our third annual national cocktail competition. Black Restaurant Week is challenging bartenders from across the nation to create Maker’s Mark cocktails that are one-of-a-kind and full-flavored just like the signature bourbon.


This year’s event is organized as a bracket-style competition. During each round bartenders will be challenged to craft cocktails testing their flavor profiles and innovation. Cocktail recipes and campaign challenges will be judged by our industry experts and audience to find the best bartender in the nation.

Rep Your City

Rep Your City by creating a unique cocktail to showcase the flavors of your city.
The top bartender from each city below will battle in Chicago during our live national championship.

Which cities are participating? 

  • Atlanta & San Antonio
  • Austin
  • Bay Area & Northern California
  • Charlotte
  • Chicago
  • Columbus
  • Dallas
  • Detroit
  • Indianapolis
  • Houston
  • Los Angeles & Southern California
  • Miami
  • New Orleans
  • New York
  • St. Louis
  • Philadelphia
  • Washington DC

Who is eligible to compete?

  • This Competition is open to ANY bartender currently working in the bar, restaurant or spirits industry.
  • Contestants must be legal residents of the fifty (50) United States or the District of Columbia
  • Contestants must reside in the greater metropolitan area (20-30 miles out) of one of the following 18 cities – Atlanta, Bay Area & Northern California, Charlotte, Chicago, Columbus, Dallas, Detroit, Indianapolis, Houston, Los Angeles & Southern California, Miami, New Orleans, New York, St. Louis, Philadelphia, Washington DC. 
  • Contestants must be at least twenty-one (21) years old as of the date of entry
  • Contestants must be of African-American, African, or Caribbean descent
  • Exclusions: Individuals who are full- or part-time employees of Maker’s Mark, Beam Suntory, or any ambassadors or representatives of competing brands at the time of entry, as well as the immediate family (spouse, parents, siblings, and children) and household members of those employees, are not eligible to enter.


Black Restaurant Week will decide in its sole discretion whether the applications adhere to these entry requirements.

Applications Close Friday, June 10, 2022

Please make sure to review the Competition Rules in detail. Any incorrect or incomplete applications will be disqualified.

2021 National Cocktail Competition

Watch all the competition episodes  from the 2021 Power of the Palate Cocktail Competition.