Four Food NI companies are among six Northern Ireland distilleries who have won a record 16 major awards in the prestigious International Wine and Spirit Competition (IWSC) held recently in England. The awards from an influential panel of judges include three golds and five silvers for mostly craft distilleries in Northern Ireland.
The golds were won by Copeland for its recently launched 1778 Cash Finished Navy Strength Gin; Mourne Dew in Warrenpoint for its Rostrevor Ruby Gin; and Niche Drinks in Derry for its Tesco Finest Salted Caramel Cream Irish Liqueur.
All the awards were for smaller producers of Irish gin and Irish whiskey as well as cream liqueurs. They demonstrate the growing strength of the Northern Ireland spirits industry and its growing achievements in the international marketplace. The companies are increasingly winning business in Europe, Asia, Australia and the US.
The IWSC is the world’s largest and most influential international spirit awards company. It prides itself on providing expert, impartial evaluation, benchmarking, increasing brand awareness and boosting sales. The organisation’s supporters include eminent professionals and offers companies access to key buyers and influencers.
IWSC celebrated the 50th anniversary of its founding in 1969 by wine chemist Anton Masel to “reward excellence in drinks worldwide, ensuring recognition for the very best wines and spirits”.
The IWSC sets the international benchmark for quality, standing out in the crowded world of drinks awards with hundreds of global experts – including buyers, producers, distillers, sommeliers, distributors and influencers – judging wines and spirits throughout the year.
IWSC also promotes companies at international trade and consumer shows, trade marketing and through social media.
The Northern Ireland winners were:
Boatyard Distillery, Enniskillen
Winter Solstice Gin – Bronze
Boatyard Double Gin – Silver
Copeland Distillery, Donaghadee
1778 Cash Finished Navy Strength Gin – Gold
Irish Gin – Bronze
Shortcross Gin, Crossgar
Shortcross Classic Gin – Silver
Rosie’s Garden Gin – Bronze
Mourne Dew Distillery, Warrenpoint
Rostrevor Ruby Irish Gin – Gold
Kilbroney Premium Irish Gin Bronze
Hinch Distillery, Ballynahinch
5-Year Old Double Wood Irish Single Malt Whiskey – Bronze
Peated Irish Single Malt Irish Whiskey – Silver
Ninth Wave Irish Gin – Silver
Niche Drinks, Derry
Iriah Cream Liqueur – Bronze
Tesco Finest Salted Caramel Cream Liqueur –Gold
Tesco Irish Cream Liqueur – Silver
Luxco Tesco The Quiet Man Irish Whiskey 2 Year old Single Malt Irish Whiskey – Bronze