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About the San Antonio Cocktail Conference

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Cutting an ice block with chainsaw at

Cutting an ice block with chainsaw at "Ice the Old Fashioned Way" seminar. 2012 San Antonio Cocktail Conference

Photo Courtesy: © Shannon Graham

The Basics of the San Antionio Cocktail Conference:

The San Antonio Cocktail Conference is a four-day event meant to celebrate the modern cocktail culture. This annual event will make its debut in 2012 and takes place at the end of January.

The 2013 conference is scheduled for January 17-20, 2013.

The conference, the first of its kind in Texas, was the brainchild of Chef Mark Bohanan who owns the renowned Bohanan's Restaurant & Bar in downtown San Antonio. The Sheraton Gunter Hotel San Antonio hosts many of the events and seminars, with other nearby bars and restaurants hosting other events. This is an ideal location for such a conference, as it is surrounded by the city's cultural and historic attractions including the River Walk, Market Square, the Alamo, and a variety of arts, food, and shopping that the city is famous for.

If you have attended Tales of the Cocktail in New Orleans or the Manhattan Cocktail Classic in New York City, the format of the San Antonio Cocktail Conference will seem very familiar as Bohanan modeled the event after those. The conference will include educational seminars, tastings, and cocktail parties. It is an ideal event for both the professional and amateur bartender, anyone with an interest in cocktails and fine drinking, and the multicultural appeal of San Antonio.

Event Highlights:

The San Antonio Cocktail Conference line-up for 2012 includes 27 classes led by 31 talented bartenders from throughout the world. The subjects of the classes range from ice making and an exploration of bitters and forgotten cocktails, to the history of Texas' liquors and spicy cocktails one might expect from an area famous for Tex-Mex cuisine.

A soiree marks the end of each day of the San Antonio Cocktail Conference. These cocktail parties are hosted at various bars in the downtown area. All are within walking distance of the main event, though on one night attendees are shuttled via river taxi between venues, making this a unique San Antonio experience. On Sunday morning a Bloody Mary Brunch is sponsored by Texas-based Cinco Vodka.

Two other elements that are typical of a cocktail conference are a bartending competition and tasting rooms. Unlike many others, the competition in San Antonio is open to anyone (pro and amateur) willing to pay the miniscule entry fee and free for those who wish to watch the fun. The tasting rooms are open throughout the day, include guided tastings, and are available for attendees to explore new and old favorites from the liquor industry and speak with each brand's experts.

For A Good Cause:

Another unique aspect of this conference is that it is raising money for a single charity that is not related to the industry. All proceeds from the San Antonio Cocktail Conference will go to HeartGift. This organization is dedicated giving children in developing countries heart surgeries that are normally unavailable to them.

Learn More:

For more details on the San Antonio Cocktail Conference, visit the website: SanAntonioCocktailConference.com/.

Coverage of the 2012 conference:

San Antonio has a artistically rich, ethnically diverse history and culture and is a fun destination for travelers. To explore more of the city's highlights visit SanAntonio.About.com or VisitSanAntonio.com.

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