Our celebration of industry accomplishments returns this November with a new name and exciting new award categories. 

In this year of extraordinary circumstances, we at DRiNK and Thirsty Work Productions are happy to announce that the DRiNK Awards – previously called DMBA – will be returning this November. With the amazing resilience, perseverance and camaraderie the bar community has shown throughout the unprecedented challenges of 2020, it’s now more important than ever to come together to celebrate our industry and all of its inspiring accomplishments.

The fifth edition of the DRiNK Awards will take place on Monday, November 23, 2020, with 600+ guests from the industry and beyond gathering in Shanghai in the ballroom of the Jing An Shangri-La. The ceremony will also be preceded by the inaugural editions of two exciting events – DRiNK Street on November 21 and 22 in Shanghai, and the China-wide DRiNK Fest – watch this space for more exciting details coming soon.

Under the theme of “Showbiz”, the DRiNK Awards 2020 will pay tribute to the grand stage that is the bar scene and the all the stars who light it up. The dazzling ceremony will recognise the people, venues and brands that make our industry so dynamic. Its winners are selected, as always, by a voting panel of over 200+ industry professionals with an intimate knowledge of the China and Asia bar scenes.

This year, we will be handing out a total of 23 awards, as listed below.

China awards
*New for 2020

Visionary Award* 最具创新意识奖

Design Award最佳设计

Bartender Brand 最佳调酒师品牌

Brand Ambassador最佳品牌大使

Wine Program 最佳葡萄酒项目

Beer Program最佳啤酒项目

Cocktail Program 最佳鸡尾酒项目

High Volume Bar 最佳高客流量酒吧

Hotel Bar 最佳酒店酒吧

Restaurant Bar 最佳餐厅酒吧

Service Award最佳服务

Entrepreneurship Award创业精神大奖

Founders Award创始人特别大奖

Regional Bar of the Year (North*) 地区年度酒吧(华北)

Regional Bar of the Year (South)* 地区年度酒吧(华南)

Regional Bar of the Year (East)* 地区年度酒吧(华东)

Regional Bar of the Year (West)* 地区年度酒吧(华西)

Bar Team 最佳酒吧团队

Bartender of the Year 年度调酒师

Bar of the Year 年度酒吧

Asia awards

Bar Team最佳酒吧团队

Bartender of the Year 年度调酒师

Bar of the Year 年度酒吧

These categories, and the format of the ceremony, have been expanded and adapted to not only reflect our ever-changing scene, but also with strong awareness of the global pandemic and its effect on the market. We at TWP have carefully considered how to best carry out our 2020 voting process in a way that still allows us recognise the hard work and talent of the trade, but in a way that is both fair and conscientiously reflective of the current situation.

As such, the DRiNK Awards 2020 ceremony will more closely focus on the local China market, while also honouring the Asia scene in a slightly adjusted way.

With COVID-19 making travel near impossible, this year we will set aside our award for International Bartender of the Year, while also asking our Asia judging panel to assess the bars, teams and bartenders they vote for a little differently. Rather than basing votes on visits to bars and interactions with people and teams, we will ask them to vote based on who, where and what they have admired and turned to for inspiration during this tough time. Who has motivated them? Who has gone the extra mile to tackle the difficult situations faced by our industry head on? Who has been a shining beacon during the pandemic? We look forward to honouring the innovation of Asia based bartenders, bar teams and bars in a special way in 2020.

Now, mark your calendars for November 23, and as we always recommend to book the following day off! It’s going to be epic ­– if you need a reminder why, watch the video recap below of last year’s awards: