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2017 Guest Speakers

Sessions are included with your ticket price and will be taught by local bartenders and industry celebrities. Check back soon for the 2017 line-up of sessions and speakers.

Here are some of the sessions we offered in 2016.

Paul Clarke

Botanical Bonanza: Getting to Know Aperitifs & Amari
Paul Clarke is the executive editor of Imbibe magazine and the author of The Cocktail Chronicles (Spring House Press, 2015). A journalist who has specialized in spirits, cocktails and the culture of drink for nearly a decade, he has written for the New York Times, San Francisco Chronicle, Serious Eats, Tasting Table and many other publications and websites, and is a member of the editorial board for the Oxford Companion to Spirits and Cocktails, to be published by Oxford University Press. In 2014, his work earned a Bert Greene Award for Culinary Writing about Beverages from the International Association of Culinary Professionals (IACP), and a Tales of the Cocktail Spirited Award for Best Writing about Spirits and Cocktails. Since 2005, he has documented his exploration of fine spirits and mixology on The Cocktail Chronicles, one of the first exclusively spirits-and-cocktail-related blogs on the Internet. While he’s still not sure it’s a good thing that his drinking habits have attracted media attention, Clarke has been profiled on and in the Seattle Post-Intelligencer; has been quoted in publications including the New York Times, Washington Post, Seattle Times, Seattle Weekly, LA Confidential and Tiki Magazine; and in 2011 was named by Imbibe magazine as one of the “People Who Have Changed the Way We Drink.” He lives in Seattle.

Amanda Reed

Botanical Bonanza: Getting to Know Aperitifs & Amari
Amanda Reed has been developing bar programs and menus throughout San Francisco and Seattle for over a decade. She is currently the Beverage Director for Heartwood Provisions, a new downtown restaurant that specialized in food and cocktail pairings. At Heartwood, Amanda utilizes fortifieds and other low proof ingredients to create new and interesting ways to enjoy food and beverage pairings.

Chris Elford

Beyond Using Beer in Craft Cocktails
Chris Elford is a Certified Cicerone, cocktail bartender and former craft distiller. In New York, he opened legendary brew temple Proletariat and the amaro-focused cocktail bar Amor Y Amargo. This summer, he will open two new bars, the beer-focused No Anchor and tropical cocktail den Navy Strength.

Andy McClellan

Let's break out that thermos!
A native of Western Europe, Andy spent years mastering his craft in some of the best restaurants in the Northwest, including as bartender at Tom Douglas’ Lola, and bar manager at Maria Hines’ Golden Beetle, Le Zinc and Jason Stratton’s Aragona, before joining the staff at Westward.

Rebecca SerVoss

Shrubs: On Your Bar Not In Your Garden
Rebecca SerVoss is the owner and proprietress of The Shrubbery, a small batch shrub company in Seattle WA. The Shrubbery is, at its heart, about making and sharing delicious drinks with people. Starting with locally sourced fruit, each batch captures the flavors of the season with high quality wine vinegar to add acidity and preserves the flavor naturally, and cane sugar for sweetness. Over the last two years she's had the opportunity to meet and work with some of the most talented local bartenders, craft distillers, and restaurateurs. She loves combining classic cocktail forms with shrubs, to come up with new and unique tastes and enjoys the alchemy of both craft cocktails and craft mocktails.