IWSC shares shortlist for inaugural Spirits Wholesaler Trophy

IWSC news

Thu 23 Feb 2023

Each year the IWSC recognises individual brands, awarding gold, silver and bronze medals to spirits at its annual spirits judging. Beyond these tastings, the IWSC also recognises the creativity of the companies bringing these drinks to the customer with its Business Awards.

New for our 2023 Business Awards is our Spirits Wholesaler Trophy, launched to shine a light on wholesalers of all shapes and sizes leading the way, adapting and innovating in order to provide the best possible servicefor their customers. 

Our judging panel comprised of the IWSC’s Industry Champion, Richard Seale, regular IWSC judges Joel Harrison, Ivan Dixon and David T Smith and from the IWSC, Sam Cooklin-Smith.

We are delighted to reveal our 2023 shortlist for the IWSC’s Spirits Wholesaler Trophy:

Master of Malt Trade

With an already impressive line-up of quality brands, over the past yar MoM has further built its range adding several exclusive new partners including Sassenach and the Oxford Distillery.

Developments over the past year have included improved delivery options, including next day delivery, streamlining the on-boarding process and ordering procedure for customers and introducing new ways to showcase products by launching dram sampling kits.

Master of Malt is focussed on championing innovation in order to provide an unrivalled customer experience, and based on the company’s grown of 50% in 2022, they are certainly succeeding. The judges all agreed the team was  knowledgeable and passionate and the reputation for treating their suppliers well is no trade secret. A great business with an array of quality brands. 


Speciality Drinks

A company that puts its people first – Speciality Drinks is very vocal about its team being its biggest asset. In the last year, employees have benefited from a furthering of the extensive product training programme.

Ongoing learning is vital for a team with such a passion for spirits education, providing customers with bespoke trainings and consultancy services. Specialty Drinks will be launching its new event series, ‘Speciality Sessions’ in 2023 along with newsletter ‘The Measure’ sharing with latest category insights, products and interviews.

Always on the lookout for how to improve performance on environmental issues, in 2022 Speciality Drinks hosted a sustainability-focused open-panel discussion at Raising the Back Bar with The Sustainable Restaurant Association, Avallen Spirits, ecoSPIRITS and Discarded Spirits to raise awareness of sustainability in hospitality. On a smaller scale it was also nice to hear about the team’s beach clean in Whitstable with Coast Drinks as part of the company’s CSR program.


The winner of the IWSC’s 2023 Spirits Wholesaler Trophy will be announced at 16.00 on Thursday 2 March.