Press Release

2016 Best Bar None Awards sets new record of applicants competing for top honors for responsible service of alcohol

Toronto - May 25, 2016

Real Sports Bar & Grill, Jack Astor’s Bar and Grill- John Street and Crocodile Rock have been recognized as the best among bars, restaurants and clubs when it comes to implementing the highest standards for the responsible sales and service of alcohol in Toronto’s downtown core.

The establishments were selected by a judging panel comprising Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD Canada), the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario (AGCO), and Best Bar None (BBN) Ontario, an industry-led international accreditation and awards program that rewards excellence amongst responsible liquor sales licensees.

There are eight winners of the fourth annual Best Bar None Awards in Toronto:

Best Bar/Lounge: Real Sports Bar & Grill

Best Members Club: The Spoke Club
Best Restaurant: Jack Astor’s (John Street)

Best Hotel: Hyatt Regency Toronto on King
Best Club: Crocodile Rock

Best Venue: BMO Field
Best Pub: Fionn MacCool’s (Front Street) People’s Choice: The Bier Markt (King Street)

"I congratulate the winners for serving their community and for being role models for the industry. In order to enter the competition, a licensed establishment must first be accredited by BBN. This is a rigorous process and it is very gratifying to see more restaurants and clubs choosing to participate in the program,” said Tony Elenis, the President and CEO the Ontario Restaurant, Hotel and Motel Association, which leads BBN Ontario.

Both the winners and the newly accredited establishments receive a BBN decal and other marketing materials to promote their status as a BBN-accredited venue. The “Best Bar None” Ontario decal assures patrons an establishment has met the highest standards for responsible service of alcohol.

BBN Ontario partners include MADD Canada, the AGCO, LCBO, King Spadina Residents Association, Toronto Entertainment District Business Improvement Area, Toronto Police Service and the City of Toronto.

“MADD Canada is proud to partner with BBN Ontario’s goal to provide licensed establishments with a framework for implementing the highest operating standards. The increase in the number of applicants seeking accreditation demonstrates the commitment and vigilance of the industry to help keep our roads safe,” said Andrew Murie, CEO of MADD Canada.

A key component of the accreditation and awards process is an independent third party investigation to verify that an establishment is in compliance with its own processes and the appropriate provincial regulations as administered by the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario.

“The AGCO actively supports compliance of its liquor licensees through education and risk-management tools. The BBN Ontario program complements our work because it strengthens the collaboration between the industry, the community, and law enforcement,” said Tom Mungham, AGCO’s Chief Operating Officer.

Best Bar None originated in 2003 in Manchester, U.K. In the U.K. and in Alberta, Best Bar None programs have been credited with increasing levels of public safety and reducing crime in downtown entertainment districts. The program also improved the economic viability of these districts and built positive relationships between owners of licensed establishments and local community groups and police.

Media contact:

Tony Elenis
President and CEO
Ontario Restaurant Hotel & Motel Association
Ph. 905-361-0268