As expected it was a hard fought contest with 13 of the country’s top mixologists entering both rounds – the ‘Classic’ Bloody Mary and the ‘Alternative’ Bloody Mary. The three judges, Charles Campion (Food and Drink writer), Tony Conigliaro (renowned mixologist) and Tristan O’Hana (editor of Pub & Bar magazine) took their places at Hawksmoor Spitalfields Bar, and sampled their way through an awesome succession of Blood Marys.

In the ‘Classic’ round Marco Piroli of the Lab Bar was the winner – a perfectly balanced drink with a well-judged spike of TABASCO® Pepper Sauce.

In the ‘Alternative’ round George Collyer from “Mayor of Scaredy Cat Town” made a formidable drink that teamed Tequila, Mezcal, and lemon juice with TABASCO® Pepper Sauce, then added tomato puree before being finished with spray of Lagavulin 16 year old malt!

The judges remarked on the high level of creativity on display and the closeness of the result. The two winners – Piroli and Collyer – will hold the British title and will be spending three days in New Orleans next summer.