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Spirits and brands from 86 different countries battled it out for medals in the 2021 London Spirits Competition, demonstrating how quickly the awards have become a major part of the global sports industry calendar, with a 42% increase in entries from the 2020 event.
The most hotly contested categories were: gin (471 entries), whisky (132), liqueurs (131) and rum (123). Seven countries stood in terms of the number of products entered and medals won with leading nations being: The UK; Australia; United States; Italy; France; Canada; and Germany.
The medal winners in the fourth London Spirits Competition can be rightly proud of their achievement. For they have had to work a lot harder for their success than they do in other drinks events that only judge a product on its quality and what it tastes like.
The London Spirts Competition judges all the spirits and brands entered in the same way a consumer does, be it buying a brand in a supermarket or ordering one what at a bar. As well as what it tastes like, they want to know what it costs, and what it looks like.
Those key factors are all taken into account by the judges of the London Spirits Competition, individuals who all know what they are looking for as they are made up of professional bartenders, mixologists, bar tenders and consultants who judge and assess products every day of their working lives in just the same way.
That’s what has made the London Spirits Competition in just four years one of the most prestigious and important events in the spirits world. It is rewarding, celebrating and helping to promote the spirits brands that consumers will most want to buy.
Gary Burdekin, master bartender at TGI Friday’s UK, captures what it means for judges to take part in the competition: “The fact that not only is the spirit being judged, but the design and packaging too. It’s good to be able to give an overall opinion on a spirit. There’s been many times where I like the look of a bottle, but I’ll never buy it because of what’s inside. It singles out the ‘complete’ products from the rest.”
Fellow judge, Daniel Susko, head of Bars at Annabel’s and The Birley Clubs, agrees: “Acknowledging not only taste and quality, but the appearance and design of the final product completes the feel of the brand as a whole.”
Sid Patel, founder of the London Spirits Competition and chief executive of the Beverage Trade Network that organises the event, alongside the other London Competitions for Beer and Wine, said: “The large range and diversity of spirits entered in this year’s competition from all over the world demonstrates how far distillers and brand owners have come in recent years in raising the bar, improving the overall quality of brands available, and, in a way making it even harder to pick out the winners in the London Spirits Competition.
“All the medal winners in the 2021 event can be rightly proud of their achievement. Every product is judged on its own merits using our unique judging criteria that makes the London Spirits Competition both highly respected by the drinks and bar industry, but by spirits lovers, drinkers and consumers all over the world.”
Overall Spirit Of The Year: Ramsbury Single Estate Vodka by Ramsbury Brewing & Distilling Co.
The overall Spirit Of The Year award goes to Ramsbury Single Estate Vodka, made by Ramsbury Single Estate Spirits, which scored 96 points, the highest in the competition. The Ramsbury distillery prides itself on its sustainable practices with what it calls its “field to table” approach. Its Single Estate vodka, has a smooth and rich style, using Horatio wheat grown on the Ramsbury estate. Each and every bottle can be traced back to the very field in which the wheat was grown.
Winners by Type of Spirits
Spirit Of The Year - Ramsbury Single Estate Vodka by Ramsbury Brewing & Distilling Co. Ltd
Vodka Of The Year - Ramsbury Single Estate Vodka by Ramsbury Brewing & Distilling Co. Ltd
Rum Of The Year - Rum Nation by Rum Nation International
Tequila Of The Year - IZO Tequila Extra Anejo Cristalino by Belzmart Group, Llc Dba Izo Mezcal
Gin Of The Year - Botanic Australis Navy Strength Gin by Mt. Uncle Distillery
Whisky Of The Year - Dingle Distillery Fourth Single Pot Still Release by The Dingle Distillery
Brandy Of The Year - St-Rémy Signature by St-Rémy
Liqueur Of The Year - Muyu Vetiver Gris by De Kuyper Royal Distillers
Cognac Of The Year - A. de Fussigny Grande Champagne VSOP by A De Fussigny Sas
Distillery Of The Year - De Kuyper Royal Distillers from Netherlands.
Country Category Winners:
United Kingdom: Ramsbury Single Estate Vodka, Ramsbury Brewing & Distilling Co Ltd.
Netherlands: Muyu Vetiver Gris, De Kuyper Royal Distillers
Australia: Botanic Australis Navy Strength Gin, Mt Uncle Distillery
Italy: Rum Nation, Rum Nation International
Ireland: Dingle Distillery Fourth Single Pot Still Release, The Dingle Distillery
France: Eau De Vie De Poire Williams Vrp, Distillerie Massenez
Japan: Enso Japanese Blended Whisky, Enso Whisky
United States: Legent Bourbon, Beam Suntory
Canada: Georgian Bay Vodka, Georgian Bay Spirit Co
Germany: Mahiki White Coconut, MBG International Premium Brands GmbH
Mexico: IZO Tequila Extra Anejo Cristalino, Belzmart Group, Llc Dba Izo Mezcal
By Judging Category
Best Spirit By Quality – Ramsbury Single Estate Vodka, Ramsbury Brewing & Disilling Co Ltd
Best Spirit By Value – Eau De Vie De Poire Williams, Distillerie Massenez
Best Spirit By Package – Muyu Vetiver Gris, De Kuyper Royal Distillers.
* Click here to see the full results in the London Spirits Competition.
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