Without tasting gins personally, how can you tell that one gin is better than the other? This is where Gin awards come in. While personal taste is subjective and you may prefer a gin which hasn’t won a lot of awards, overall, the more awards a gin has, the more chances that it tastes better than others.

Gin award shows serve as a platform for gin distilleries to showcase their latest Gin recipes and tastes. Depending on which event you attend, entrants could be regionally based gins or draw from an international field of gin distilleries. Some awards only cover gins while some awards cover all spirits and also wine/beer. Some are even open to the broader beverage and hospital industry, in general.

Winning a gin award is equivalent to receiving an industry seal of approval. Winners serve as the benchmark for other distilleries to innovate, develop, and improve their products. The distillers themselves also get the opportunity to connect and share ideas. Gin awards also attract a wide audience. This boosts the awareness, prestige, and sales of brands.

Giving recognition to the efforts of the gin industry is not the only purpose of these awards. It also promotes the entire gin industryIncentives to innovate and participate are also a bonus!

Types of Gin Awards

As mentioned, gin awards are either regional or international. Beverage and hospitality industry awards also have a special gin category.

When a distillery joins these competitions, they join specific categories. These depend on what type of recipe they are using, or the taste of the gins. There are awards for pink gins, some specifically for London Dry Gin, and the list goes on. There are also special categories for packaging and design. Other awards also base the categories on the style and process of gin production.

Below are just some of the biggest gin awards in Australia and all over the world:

  • Australian GIN Awards: The Gin Awards describes Australia as having an “emerging [gin] industry.” They have recently received 475 entries for the Gin Awards itself, and 86 entries for the Packaging Awards. Judges of the awards have also commented that gin production for 2022 was noticeably higher.
  • Australian Distilled Spirits Awards: This awards show is all about benchmarking. It awards the types of gin that have been relevant to the history of Australia. This includes whisky, gin, vodka, and brandy.
  • San Francisco World Spirits Awards: This is probably the biggest and the biggest spirits awards in the world. In 2022, they boasted over 4000 spirits to be rated.
  • World Gin Awards: This awards show is based on a category of “internationally-recognized gin styles.” Because of this, the gins are promoted across the globe, too.

How are gins judged?

Before we get on with how gins are actually judged, it’s important to know who judges them!

Panels for these are composed of various industry experts. These range from journalists, to distillers, past winners, and even specially-trained jurors.

Distillers enter their gin into various categories. Depending on the competition, they can even be allowed to enter multiple categories. These categories are based on:

  • Gin type, style, or recipe
  • Distillery country
  • Aesthetics (packaging and label)

Assessments are typically done through blind tasting, with little to no input from the host or participants. As much as possible, gin identities are kept anonymous. This ensures the impartiality of the judgment. Evaluations are based on individual merits of the following:

  • Taste notes
  • Smell or aroma
  • Colour
  • Flaws
  • Cleanliness
  • Intensity

Gins even go through different judging rounds! This gives the jurors the opportunity to have a full experience of the spirit. For the gins, this means less competition.  

The system of judging can take an entire year. Distilleries would send in their best samples (or final product) throughout the year. Other competitions only accept entries for specific periods.

How are gins awarded?

Following the judging rounds, the panel of judges comes together to convene over their notes. Some awarding systems assign numerical bases for judging. So these are individually computed.

There are award systems that give rank awards to the gins. These can be gold, double gold, silver, etc. This allows them to enter further rounds like “Best in Show” or “Best in Category.” Other systems simply choose one overall winner per category (like the Gin of the Year). There are also other awards that have multiple winners.

Following these further rounds, a winner will be declared. The winners are allowed to display these awards on their bottles and even on their websites. 

There are tons of distilleries appearing all over the globe. This means more competition for some. But this also means opportunities for distilleries to get creative. After all, this is all about our consumers. More gin options for them are just part of the fun!

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Our range of multi award winning gins

Bright Night Wild Tasmanian Gin

Capture multi award winning Wild Tasmania in your glass. Recently awarded Asia Pacific spirit of the year 2022.

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Bright Night Pink Gin

Looks like summer sunset, tastes like strawberry sherbet. Made with Tasmanian murtis berries, try our new Pink Gin.

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Chardonnay Barrel Aged Gin

Award winning Wild Tasmanian Gin aged in a Tasmanian Winery's Choardonnay (French Oak) Barrel

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