Bartender Spirits Awards

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Jeneé Craver

Award Winning Beverage Director, Chicago

I am an award-winning senior director of outlets, with extensive experience in the beverage, fine dining, and hospitality industries.

I have managed beverage portfolios for critically acclaimed and James Beard Award-winning chefs and restaurateurs; I was a finalist in the Glenfiddich World’s Most Experimental Bartender Competition; and I hold a Level 1 Certification from the Court of Master Sommeliers.

My career highlights include:
• At The Gwen (a Conde Nast Traveler #8 hotel in the world), I grew YOY revenue by 12.49% for 3 outlets: Kostali by Naha, Upstairs at The Gwen, and in-room dining. For Kostali, I added 6.6% to total revenue through strategic beverage management, and I helped create “Tipsy Tea,” a weekend activation that drove 41% of overall sales. For Upstairs at The Gwen, I leveraged concept-focused menu design to increase specialty cocktail driven revenue by 60%.
• At Sable Kitchen & Bar (a 2018 USA Today Top 10 Hotel Bar), I redesigned and restructured the beverage program; I outperformed the industry average for cocktail costs by 17.5%; and I increased guest reservations by 200% through specialty events.
• At In the Valley, I increased YOY revenue by 36%, and I partnered closely with the owner/executive chef to create cocktail pairing menus.

Meet our Judges

Makenzie Helem

Top 30 bartenders in the US for USBG World Class 2023 and Bartender at Spilt Milk, Chicago

Charles Joly

World Class Global Bartending Winner and Official mixologist of the Emmy's and Oscars

Valerie Cao

Director of Operations & Beverage Director, Le Colonial, Chicago