The Aviary’s Charles Joly Named World’s Best Bartender

By Sarah Freeman  |  August 4, 2014

While Chicago often plays second fiddle to New York City’s cocktail scene, there is now no denying that we are first in terms of housing the world’s best bartender. On Friday night, Diageo World Class named The Aviary’s Charles Joly the best bartender in the world. He beat out 47 international competitors in a series of cocktails challenges that were staged at U.K. landmarks such as The Gleneagles in Scotland and St. Pancras station in London. Throughout the competition, bartenders were judged by a panel of experts on speed, creativity and overall mixology skill. His winning cocktail for the final Punch and Glass challenge was called Above the Clouds, and was a take on tiki cocktail presented in a treasure chest with a Chicago flag fixed to the inside of the lid. Before representing the U.S. in the finals, Joly took on 15 national winners in June and over a dozen regional challengers in May, which included Chicago's Adam Seger (Hum Spirits), Francisco Soto (Gallery Bar) and Alex Renshaw (Drumbar), according to the Chicago Tribune. Joly will hold the World's Best Bartender title until next year, when the completion will be held in Cape Town, South Africa.