Entries open for Tasting Australia Spirit Awards

The third annual Tasting Australia Spirit Awards presented by MasterCask have opened nominations today, calling for the country’s best distillers to put forward their entries.

Premier of South Australia, Steven Marshall, said the coveted awards are a national celebration of one of the country’s fastest growing industries and an exciting opportunity to highlight South Australian distillers.

“The Tasting Australia Spirit Awards presented by MasterCask are an important element of the Tasting Australia program, not only to recognise distillers from around the country but also to showcase the caliber of spirit makers we have in our own backyard,” Mr. Marshall said.

“In 2019, seven out of the nine national categories were awarded to South Australian distillers, something we as a state should be proud of.

“Since the Spirit Awards commenced in 2018, we have seen a growing emergence of artisanal spirit distillers across the country, and the Spirit Awards continue to highlight these producers year on year.”

The 2019 Tasting Australia Spirit Awards presented by MasterCask saw 162 entries from 57 distillers across Australia, recognising the best Australian whisky, gin, vodka, rum and more.

Tasting Australia presented by RAA Travel Beverage Director Nick Stock said the awards aim to recognise the ingenuity and energy in the distilling industry and is calling on national distillers to enter their products into the 2020 awards.

“The Tasting Australia Spirit Awards presented by MasterCask are an important launch pad for distillers nationwide, providing them with an opportunity to enter into the commercial world,” says Nick Stock.

“Once a distiller wins a nationally recognised award like this, it gives the brand credibility and can really help project them into the mainstream market. It is a goal for us to see emerging distillers enter their products into these awards and thrive because of it.”

Entries into the Tasting Australia Spirit Awards presented by MasterCask will be judged by a panel of experts, led by World Whisky Award Hall of Fame inductee Bill Lark, of Tasmania’s Lark Distillery.

“This will be my third year judging the Tasting Australia Spirit Awards and I am looking forward to coming back to South Australia and seeing and tasting all the fantastic entries,” says Bill Lark.

“Each year the quality of spirits entered into the awards gets better and better. The Tasting Australia Spirt Awards are the perfect opportunity for both new and established distillers nationwide to showcase their products and receive the recognition they deserve.”

Appealing to more distillers than ever before, two new awards have been introduced in the 2020 Tasting Australia Spirit Awards presented by MasterCask, the Best Small Cask Maturation Award and the Best Independent Bottler Award.

The Best Small Cask Maturation Award acknowledges those small cask-matured releases which previously have not met eligibility for the Best Small Batch Award. The Best Independent Bottler Award acknowledges the rise of contract distilling in Australia and recognises entrants who develop and own their recipes and oversee the distillation but do not own the distillery where their entries are made.

The Tasting Australia Spirit Awards presented by MasterCask announcement of results will be held on Saturday 28 March 2020 at The Freemasons, North Terrace. Nominations for entry close on Friday 13 March 2020.

Tasting Australia presented by RAA Travel is Australia’s premier eating and drinking festival, showcasing an extensive range of artisan food and beverage experiences over ten days from March 27 until April 5.