By Sam Butler
OLD Bushmills Distillery in County Antrim has won three golds and a silver in the world’s most important competition for spirits, the International Wine and Spirits Competition (ISC).
The historic distillery gained gold for its Black Bush blend, its 16-year-old and 21-year-old single malts. In addition, the company, regarded as the world’s oldest licensed distillery, was awarded silver for its 12-year-old single malt.
Bushmills whiskeys were entered by Proximo, its New York based marketing agency behind the recent successes of the distillery. Furthermore, Proximo entered The Sexton, another whiskey from Bushmills. The Sexton, which also won gold at IWSC, is currently the biggest selling single malt in the US.
The competition is an annual celebration of the world’s best spirits.
The company, a Food NI member, is now among the world’s most successful whiskey distillers.
There were also golds for the first single malt from Shortcross in Crossgar. The whiskey was launched at Rademon Estate Distillery earlier in the year. Copeland in Donaghadee was voted the world’s outstanding gin, Jawbox Gin also received gold for its classic gin and export strength gin.
There was gold too for Boatyard Double Gin in Enniskillen; gold McConnell’s five-year-old whiskey from Belfast; gold for Limavady single barrel whiskey; and golds for Niche Drinks Tesco Finest Irish Cream Liqueur, Gingerbread Latte Irish Cream Liqueur and Tesco Finest Caramel Liqueur and Marks and Spencer Traditional Irish Cream Liqueur, all produced in Derry.
Having celebrated its 50th anniversary in 2019, the IWSC remains as relevant today as it did when wine chemist Anton Massel founded the original format back in 1969
When Massel created the International Wine and Spirit Competition, his aim – as it remains to this day – was to reward excellence in drinks worldwide, ensuring recognition for the very best wines and spirits.
The IWSC has set 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.
n Two companies – Titanic in Belfast and Limavady – also won gold for whiskeys in the Sam Francisco Wine and Spirits Competition.
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