International Wine & Spirit Competition announces tasting changes for 2011

IWSC news

Fri 14 Jan 2011

Noted as the world’s most prestigious, independent wine competition, the International Wine & Spirit Competition (IWSC), is now accepting entries from all countries for 2011.


With an unrivalled reputation for the rigor and validity of its judging process, the IWSC is proud to be the only competition of its kind that conducts a fully blind tasting where judges see only numbered glasses, followed by extensive chemical analysis. This judging is conducted under EU accredited processes with panels selected from over 300 fully qualified experienced industry judges representing the full breadth of the trade and takes places over a six month period enabling the IWSC to judge current vintages making the results uniquely valid and indicative of the marketplace.


The IWSC is constantly seeking to improve its judging and make itself more reflective of the needs of the industry and in 2011 it is moving the local tasting round of South African wine entries from London to Stellenbosch. This initiative will reduce shipping costs for producers and ensure winners from South Africa benefit from a higher profile on a local and global level. Judging will occur in July this year. This builds on the first overseas tastings for the IWSC which took place in California in 2010 and will be repeated this year in March at the Culinary Institute of America.


As ever top winners will benefit from the international exposure and commercial benefit offered by the IWSC when they are showcased at no extra cost at international trade events including ProWein, the London International Wine Fair (LIWF), Vinexpo and Vinitaly as well as IWSC organised events such as the Worshipful Company of Distillers Spirits Tasting and the IWSC Banquet both held in the City of London. The IWSC also help raise the profile of winners by generating editorial coverage in international publications and through retail promotion, whilst any medal winner of the IWSC receives free artwork to help them promote their awards globally.


Allen Gibbons, IWSC Managing Director said; “We at the IWSC are constantly striving to offer producers further added value each year, as the new judging procedure for South African and the continuation of the highly successful US judging demonstrate. It’s not easy to win an IWSC award and we understand that for producers, winning is only the beginning. Once achieved, we work with the producers to help build brands and drive sales by communicating these triumphs to the trade and press around the world and we provide all our winners with complimentary marketing materials and exposure on our website to help them achieve the recognition they deserve. It has been impressive to see the spread of IWSC medals available in the UK retailers.”


The IWSC 2011 is now open for Northern and Southern hemisphere wine and Spirit entries. To enter, please visit the website You can also request an entry pack by e-mail at or by phone on +44 (0)1483 548 963.


Editors’ notes: The International Wine and Spirit Competition was founded in 1969 and is the premier competition of its kind in the world. Its aim is to promote the quality and excellence of the world's best wines, spirits and liqueurs. All entries of wines, spirits and liqueurs are blind tasted in groups divided by variety, region and vintage as necessary. Awards are made on a points system and sponsored trophies are presented in selected categories.


Technical analysis is carried out on Gold (Best in Class), Gold and Silver (Best in Class) award winning wines, spirits and liqueurs to ensure that all products are technically sound and will be of the same high quality when they reach the consumer as they were when the judging panels originally tasted them.


The IWSC is supported by a group of Vice Presidents made up of some of the most influential men and women in the trade, including Baroness Philippine de Rothschild, Miguel Torres, Marchese Piero Antinori, Robert Drouhin, Paul Symington, May de Lencquesaing, Gina Gallo, Rafael Guilisasti, Prinz Michael zu Salm-Salm and this year’s IWSC President, Prince Robert of Luxembourg, Clarence Dillon’s great-grandson and Domaine Clarence Dillon’s President.


Deadlines for entries:

Northern hemisphere:

26th February 2011


30th April 2011

Southern hemisphere:

1st July 2011 (South Africa)

5th August 2011 (South American countries)

12th August 2011 (Australia)

26th August 2011 (New Zealand)


For further information, interviews and comment, please contact: David Kelly, Marketing Manager IWSC

17 Dunsfold Park, Stovolds Hill, Cranleigh, Surrey, GU6 8TB

Tel: +44 (0) 1483 548 963