IWSC announces results from its biggest year for spirits awards entries

Spirit news

Wed 16 Mar 2022

By Gemma Duncan

Following a bumper year for entries, the IWSC has announced the medal winners for its 2022 spirits awards.

Over two weeks, 85 of the world’s leading spirit experts were gathered to assess over 4,000 spirits from over 90 countries, entered into 21 different categories. Each spirit was tasted and awarded a score, translating for many entries into a Gold Outstanding, Gold, Silver or Bronze medal.

In total, over 500 spirits were awarded the sought-after Gold Outstanding and Gold medals, with whiskies – including whiskies from Scotland, France, Ireland, America, Canada, Germany, India, Israel, Sweden, Taiwan and Japan – making up half the Gold medal haul.

Rum was another brown spirit category which performed well this year. Total rum entries were up 23% versus the previous year, with over 20 rums awarded the IWSC’s highest medal accolades – a Gold Outstanding or Gold medal.

Demonstrating its enduring popularity, Gin continued to dominate at the awards this year, accounting for more than 1,200 of total entries and taking home 15% of the year’s Gold Outstanding and Gold medals.

To receive the IWSC’s highest accolade of a Gold Outstanding medal, drinks need to be awarded an overall score of 98 points. This year, over 120 spirits were awarded 98+ points, and of these, 14 received 99 points – the highest score in the competition. Out of these top-scorers, five were Asian spirits – Baijiu and Shōchū. Scotch whiskies took another of the five highest scores and the remaining four 99 pointers were all awarded to gins – two from Australia, one from Northern Ireland and one from Estonia.

The results for all spirits categories are available now on the IWSC website.  All spirits were tasted by the IWSC’s carefully curated panels of industry experts, led by members of its Spirits Judging Committee: Ian Burrell,Marie Cheong Thong,Dawn Davies MW,Joel Harrison,Deano Moncrieffe, Richard Paterson OBE, David T. Smith and Olivier Ward.

Each year following the judging, the highest scoring medal winners are re-tasted to award IWSC’s spirit trophies. The IWSC’s Trophy results will be announced on 23 March.