The People’s Choice Spirits Awards has announced its 2022 shortlist of finalists.
Now in its second year and part of the People’s Choice Drinks Awards competitions, is the only national spirits awards judged by consumers, assisted by members of the trade.
This year, entries have trebled, requiring the help of over 90 judges in Edinburgh, Manchester and London.
This year’s finalists can be found HERE.
The shortlist highlights the variety of spirits submitted as well as the companies and brands, keen to know what consumers really think about their spirits.
Janet Harrison, founder of the PCDA , said: ‘We’ve had entries from small artisan producers right through to large importers and everything in between. We are so thrilled that the brands understand the importance of involving those who drink their spirits, involved in the competition.’
Whisky finalists include – Bunnahabhain 12yo Single Malt Scotch Whisky: Submitted by Distell International; Deanston 12yo Highland Single Malt Scotch Whisky: Submitted by Distell International; Crabbie’s Single Malt Scotch Whisky: Submitted by Halewood Atisanal Spirits; Black Bottle Alchemy Series Island Smoke: Submitted by Distell International; Spey Chairman’s Choice: Speyside Distillers Company Ltd; Black Bottle Alchemy Series Double Cask: Submitted by Distell International; and Black Bull 21years old: Submitted by Duncan Taylor Scotch Whiskies Ltd.
There are two Classic G&T category finalists from Scottish distilleries – Sky Garden Gin: Dark Art Distillery; and Tobermory Limited Edition Hebridean Mountain Gin: Submitted by Distell International.
There’s a pair of finalists from Scotland in the Contemporary G&T category – Byron’s Gin – Melancholy Thistle: Submitted by Speyside Distillers Company Ltd; and Byron’s Gin – Bird Cherry: Submitted by Speyside Distillers Company Ltd.
William Grant & Son also have two finalists in the Rum and Vodka categories with the brand Discarded – Discarded Banana Peel Rum: Submitted by William Grant And Sons Ltd; and Discarded Grape Skin Vodka: Submitted by William Grant And Sons Ltd.
There was a large number of no and low alcohol drinks submitted this time, as well as canned cocktails – reflecting the growth in popularity of both categories.
The competition is extremely inclusive in nature and accepts spirits from anywhere in the world, at any price point and in any format.
The judges for the first-round panel were selected from over 300 applicants from around the UK. Most were spirits enthusiasts who had proved their worth on paper – including food and drink bloggers and those involved in local spirits clubs, as well as WSET (The Wines & Spirits Education Trust) students.
More professional tasters formed the backbone of the round two panel, which included The Three Drinkers presenter Helena Nicklin, ‘Dr Whisky’, Sam Simmons from Atom Brands, Dave Marsland from The Manchester Rum Festival and many other bar owners, distillers and brand ambassadors from around the UK.
Invited industry guest Rachel McCarton-Jones, from Crate PR, said: ‘This week I was super-proud to be part of a crack team judging at the People’s Choice Drinks Awards. Tasting through rum, vodka liqueurs, gin and more, all selected by consumer.
‘One thing was clear; it’s easy to get caught up on the “rules” in spirits, but in the end, consumers like what they like. Refreshingly, the experience highlighted that there really is room for all in spirits.
For me, competitions grounded in the consumer, like the People’s Choice Drinks Awards, can only become more important as shoppers “geek up” and channel their enthusiasm into learning more. After all, they’re the ones voting with their spend.’
The winners’ ceremony will take place on January 17 2022, at the Stoller Hall, Manchester.
The People’s Choice Spirit Awards are the only Awards to host its ceremony outside of London. The winners will be revealed at a suitably relaxed and fun event held in the Oglesby Atriu.
The event will be MC’d by Britain’s Got Talent finalist Steve Royle and presented by Helena Nicklin and Aidy Smith from The Three Drinkers, Amazon Prime series.
Tickets are £65 to attend and include welcome drinks from top notch Northern producers, delicious food from Cachumba and live music.
The People’s Choice Wine Awards was created in 2017 by Janet Harrison of Cracking Wine and Judy Kendrick, MD of Award-winning wine marketing consultancy JK Marketing.
Find out more at https://peopleschoicedrinksawards.com
The 2022 Sponsors (across wines and spirits) are Double Dutch Drinks, Blends, The Fairtrade Foundation, Yang Sing, The Buyer, Smurfit Kappa, Wines of Portugal, Berlin Packaging, Lanchester Wines, MidWeek Wines, The Best Life Project, Manchester Rum Festival, Bents Garden and Home, The Scotch Whisky Experience and Master of Malt.