Spirits Competition in USA

Sommeliers Choice Awards 2023 Winners

List of leading Spirits Competition and Awards in USA

Spirits Competition and Awards in USA

USA Spirits Ratings

(Image: New York International Spirits Competition Press/Trade Event Tasting which is followed by the main event)

The New York International Spirits Competition

This is the first major international spirits competition with trade-only judges from top to bottom that consist of people who are buyers from the top retail stores, restaurant and bar owners, distributors and importers. Unlike other competitions, these judges have purchasing power and the ability to make a direct impact on brand sales.
The second major difference in this competition is that each submission will be not only placed in its product category but also its pricing category. Therefore a spirit will be judged in its category along with other spirits in its same price range by its retail price. Each category will have its own pricing levels and are listed on the submission form. So for example a Whiskey that retails for $50 will be judged with other Whiskeys in that price range and not with Whiskies that retails for $100. The judges will then know if they are judging a $54 bottle vs a $68 bottle of Irish Whiskey.

The NYISC is open to all commercially available spirits. Spirits new to New York and to the United States are strongly encouraged to submit. On average over 15% of those who submit are new to the US and or looking to enter the US Market.
At the start of each segment of the judging program, all the judges will be presented with an overview of the category along with the nuances particular to each subset. They will be informed on what price range they will be judging. The judges this year will also be given the retail price of each spirit they are judging. . As buyers they consistently make purchasing decisions not only on the spirit itself but by its price.

Brands will be rated on a set of criteria including appearance, aroma, taste, mouthfeel and finish. Upon completion of the tastings, panelists will confer and decide which samples are award worthy.

For more information: The New York International Spirits Competition | BTN Special Partnership announcement


USA Spirits Ratings

USA Spirits Ratings is the first competition where Spirits are rated for their quality, value and package. A book should never be judged by its cover. Majority of the competitions around the world judge a spirit by how it tastes, but USA Spirits Ratings looks to set a new benchmark by assesseing all award-winning spirits by thier quality, their value for their money and how they look like with their packaging. In the Competition, all spirits are tasted blind to assess their quality and how drinkable they are they for consumers in their target area. Spirits are then assessed to see how much value for money they are offering at that price point. Lastly, USA Spirits Ratings identifies spirits that stand out on shelf, or on a back bar, and assesses how well suited that design or packaging is to their target consumer group and at that price point.

The judging process for USA Spirits Ratings 2018 is, 23-24 July.

For more information: http://www.usaspiritsratings.com/


San Francisco World spirit competition

The San Francisco World Spirits Competition is regarded as the most respected spirits competition in the world. The Competition was the first comprehensive, international spirits judging ever held in the United States on an annual basis. Products are evaluated by top spirits professionals and are judged in a blind, consensual procedure ensuring competitive integrity and making this annual competition the most reputable and recognized competition in the spirits industry.

For more information: San Francisco World spirit competition


Los Angels world spirit competition

Welcome to the Spirits page of the Los Angeles International Spirits Competition. Since introducing a spirits category in 2007, the LAISC has set the standard for judging distilled beverages. Each year an esteemed panel of judges use a blind-tasting method to award medals to the best spirits from around the world, maintaining the highest standards of integrity and professionalism set 74 years ago by its partner wine competition.

For more information: Los Angels World Spirit Competition


Washington cup world completion

The Washington Cup is the first competition of its kind – a competition exclusively for American made spirits and liqueurs. We have created this competition in recognition of the recent growth and tremendous achievements of the U.S. distilling industry.

This amazing evolution has been fueled by the vision and perseverance of many dedicated individuals, and by an innately American sense of optimism. This invitation is being extended only to distilleries and producers of American spirits. While the global marketplace is filled with worthy products from countries everywhere, we believe that this is a unique time in American distilling history. We seek to offer an opportunity for the best of these new distilleries to demonstrate their skills and the excellence of their products on a level playing field. Moreover, we are convinced that the output of these distilleries represents some of the greatest new spirits and distillates in the world, manned by some of the smartest and most motivated distillers anywhere. By creating the Washington Cup, we intend to convince the American public of this fact.

The Washington Cup Spirits Competition is also unique in its methodology: it includes assessment and judging by top spirits professionals, as well as practical testing by great mixologists. There are three distinct phases to the competition; these will take place over the summer beginning July 1, 2013, and culminating in a People's Choice tasting on August 22, 2013.

More information: Washington cup world completion

Agave Spirits Challenge Tasting Competition

Six expert judges from three different countries spent seven days looking for Agave spirit excellence. Judging took place at Royal Resorts Club International and Hacienda Sisal Restaurant between February 2nd and February 8th, 2008 in Cancun, Mexico. The judges blind tasted over eighty Agave spirits and rated them in six categories: aroma, initial taste, body, finish, smoothness, and quality for price. Agave spirits from all over Mexico were eligible to compete in this inaugural Agave Spirits Challenge and dozens of Tequilas, Mezcals, Sotols and Agave based liqueurs took up the challenge.

More information: Agave spirit challenge Tasting competition


Denver International Spirits Competition

The 3rd Annual Denver International Spirits Competition, will be held on March 1-2, 2014 at the Omni Interlocken Resort, Broomfield, Colorado.

Wine Country Network, Inc, producers of the highly respected Denver International Wine Competition and The Denver International Beer Competition, will conduct the 3rd Annual Denver International Spirits
Competition on March 1-2, 2014. This double blind competition will be based on a 100 point scale and we will judge spirits (fairly) by price categories.

We are assembling a prestigious panel of 15 of America's most respected spirits authorities to participate in the largest professional spirits competition in the Rocky Mountain Region. We aim to judge based on the highest standards and build a reputation that rivals current competitions that are held in California, New York as well as London. We are the most cost effective International Spirits Competition on the plan

More information: Denver International Spirits Competition 2014


2013 International Review of Spirits Competition

America’s Oldest and Most Influential Spirits Competition since 1994. The Beverage Testing Institute’s International Review of Spirits Competition is the most authoritative, most consistent, and most influential annual spirits competition in the United States. And despite the claims of some other "weekender" spirits events, BTI’s spirits competition was the first comprehensive, annual international spirits judging ever held in the United States.

Throughout the year, the experts at the Beverage Testing Institute (BTI) invite select members of the trade to join them as panelists in blind tastings of specific categories of spirits. Spirits producers and importers, large and small, from around the world and across the country participate in our ongoing spirits competition because they know that BTI conducts the most objective, consistent, and widely respected spirits reviews in America. Millions of consumers look to BTI’s spirits reviews on Tastings.com and elsewhere when making their spirits buying decisions. Retailers and distributors across the US closely watch our reviews when looking for products to carry.

More information: International Review of Spirits Competition


The Spirits International Prestige (SIP) Awards

The Spirits International Prestige (SIP) Awards were created to fill the void that is the current state of international spirits competitions. The illusion created by massive advertising budgets, celebrity endorsements and lofty judging is old, tired and susceptible to industry bias.

There is no better group of advisors for a product than real consumers. The SIP Awards are the first to cut to the core of public opinion as a starting point, rather than an afterthought, in branding and product development. Catering to the palates and opinions of the consuming public, the SIP Awards present a unique, spirit-judging competition, unaffected by industry bias.

More information: The Spirits International Prestige (SIP) Awards


The Spirits of the Americas

The Spirits of the Americas is run by the IWSC Group. The IWSC Group is the world leader in organizing wine and spirit competitions globally.

Along with the International Wine and Spirit Competition (IWSC), which is considered to be the world’s premier competition of its kind, the company also runs the Cathay Pacific Hong Kong International Wine and Spirit Competition. The company also founded and launched UK-based 'What Food What Wine?' which due to significant interest was expanded in 2012 to include 'What Food, What Wine? India' and 'What Food, What Wine? Christmas'.
In 2011, the Group acquired US consumer tasting events, the Spirits of Mexico Competition and festival, considered to be the largest forum in North America focusing on these spirits, and Whiskies of the World.

More Information: The Spirits of the Americas



The INTERNATIONAL WINE & SPIRITS COMPETITION A WOMAN’S CHOICE ® (La Mujer Elige), is the most important world contest where women are juries, and the most important competition in Latin America

It was created in 1995 in Mendoza, Argentina and is the first global competition of wines and spirits, and the oldest in the world. Participate, every two years, more than 1000 samples, from 30 or more countries.
This International Wine & Spirits Competition has a great impact all over the world and especially in the Latin American markets, which are importing countries par excellence. Moreover, the juries are of an exceptional quality, and they group internationally distinguished women who are opinion makers in the oenological area as well as in the fields of journalism, commerce and management of the world of wine.

More Information: The International Wine & Spirits Competition A Woman’s Choice®


Winter Spirits Cocktail Competition

We have selected some of Calgary’s top bartenders to showcase their talent and personal cocktail creations at this face paced Winter Spirits Cocktail Competition! Each bartender will work with a spirit importer and their specialized drink portfolio to come up with a twist on a classic cocktail or to create something totally unique. Our very own Trusted Expert & cocktail guru, Michael Bigattini, will be judging the cocktails and awarding the winner with the grand prize and of course, bragging rights! There will be a Consumer’s Choice Award as well so get ready to share your enthusiasm for great cocktails.

More Information: Winter Spirits Cocktail Competition


The Mediterranean International Wine & Spirits Challenge (MIWC)

The success of the first edition of 2006 and the excellent international participation in the 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011 and 2012, transformed the Terravino, as a Great International Wine & Spirits and the biggest in the area, not only by the number of samples present, but also by the quality of the wine samples involved, and the excellent relationship between Israel and international products. Several winning companies in previous editions have done good business with importers and distributors in Israel, and other international countries

More Information: The Mediterranean International Wine & Spirits Challenge (MIWC)

MicroLiquor Spirit Awards

MicroLiquor Spirit Awards sponsored by Flowdesign is the World’s First Spirits Competition for Small Brands selling under 50,000 9-liter cases annually. The 2012 MicroLiquor Spirit Awards attracted an astounding 263 entries from around the world. An exclusive 9 percent of entrants won Triple Gold Medals, recognized as having both extraordinary taste and extraordinary packaging and design.

More Information: MicroLiquor Spirit Awards


Ultimate Beverage Challenge

Ultimate Beverage Challenge’s mission is to create and establish a new and higher standard of evaluation for spirits and wine that provides accurate, meaningful and useful results in recognizing and promoting the quality of beverage alcohol products. It accomplishes this by the integrity of its people and approach, its innovative and exacting methodology, and through the credibility of its results

More Information: Ultimate Beverage Challenge


Looking for Liquor Distributors?

looking for liquor distributors

Are you a distillery looking for export markets? or grow your current distribution?

Get Started with BeverageTradeNetwork.com

-Promote Your Spirit Brands

-Grow Your Distribution

-Industry related news

-Knowledge based articles on distribution and strategy. Learn More? on how BTN can help.