Edward Allen, a highly accomplished beverage industry professional with experience in top restaurants, bars and nightclubs in Las Vegas and New York, has been named vice president – beverage operations for Miami-based Carnival Cruise Lines, the world’s largest cruise operator.

In this capacity, Allen will oversee the operation of all bars, lounges and nightclubs across Carnival’s 23-ship fleet, including overall management, training, staffing and beverage menu development. Allen will start November 14, reporting to Gus Antorcha, Carnival’s senior vice president of guest commerce.

Prior to joining Carnival, Allen served as director of beverage operations for the Tao Management Group, which operates several highly successful restaurants and nightclubs in Las Vegas. During his time there, Allen was recognized for developing innovative new specialty beverages and was voted one of Las Vegas’ top mixologists by metrowize.com, a popular nightlife-oriented Web site.  In 2006, he was named one of the top sommeliers under 30 by Tasted Magazine.

Allen also spent four years as beverage director/sommelier at the Compass Restaurant in New York, overseeing a 1,350-selection wine list, and served in a similar capacity with the Starr Restaurant Group in New York, responsible for the bar operations at both the Buddakan and Morimoto restaurants in Manhattan.

Allen earned his bachelor’s degree from Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff, Ariz.

“As Carnival continues to innovate and focus on evolving our guests’ vacation experience, Edward’s extensive background overseeing beverage operations at some of the country’s most successful bars and restaurants makes him the ideal candidate to lead this important aspect of our operation,” Antorcha said.

Carnival is “The World’s Most Popular Cruise Line®,” with 23 “Fun Ships” operating three- to 16-day voyages to The Bahamas, Caribbean, Mexican Riviera, Alaska, Hawaii, Panama Canal, Canada, New England, Bermuda, Europe, the Pacific Islands and New Zealand.  In addition to the 130,000-ton Carnival Magic, which debuted in Europe and launches year-round service from Galveston, Texas, on Nov. 14, 2011, the new 130,000-ton Carnival Breeze is scheduled to enter service June 3, 2012.