World Spirits Competition 2023 to Take Place in San Francisco

The San Francisco World Spirits Competition (SFWSC) recently announced the top American whiskeys from its 2023 judging. There were nearly 40 entries that won the coveted double gold medal, with 18 in the American Single Malt category, one each in the flavored whiskey, corn whiskey, and wheat whiskey categories, and seven in the blended whiskey category. There were also 40 other American whiskeys that won gold awards. The SFWSC has become the oldest competition in North America and the largest spirits judging in the world since its founding in 2000.

A growing trend in the American whiskey market is the influence of American Single Malt expression. There are now over 200 American Single Malt whiskey producers in the US. The competition’s most extensive evaluation of American whiskeys in SFWSC history was judged by 65 jurors from all over the world who evaluated approximately 5,500 spirits for three days. The Tasting Alliance sponsors the competition and also hosts spirits competitions in New York and Singapore, wine competitions in San Francisco and New York, and beer and RTD competitions.

The top American Single Malt whiskeys will be announced at the Top Shelf Awards Gala and Grand Tasting at Resorts World in Las Vegas on June 16th and 17th. Tickets for the event can be purchased from Topshelf’s website or ReserveBar. Cedar Ridge Distillery, The Quintessential Batch 010, 46% ABV; Lost Lantern, Gentle Giant, Balcones Distilled, Texas Single Malt, 57.6% ABV; and ASW Distillery, Red X Single Malt Whiskey, 62.5% ABV are the three finalists for Best in Show American Single Malt.

Triple Eight Distillery has won hat-tricks and honors with The Notch Nantucket Island Single Malt Whiskeys 8, 12 and 15 years old, earning them regular winner status in international competitions in Nantucket. Westland Distillery’s Solm Edition 1 and Gordon’s Rare Character of Choice have both earned double gold medals, joining the other American Single Malt winners.

The Flavored, Corn Whiskey, and Wheat Whiskey categories only had one double gold medalist each, automatically giving them Best in Show awards in their respective categories. Daw Ball Whiskey Company’s Cookie Daw Whiskey won flavored whiskey, Heaven Hill’s 2nd Edition Corn Whiskey won corn whiskey, and Bainbridge’s Battle Point Barrel Proof won wheat whiskey.

The top American Blended Whiskey winner is High Bank Distillery’s Whiskey War Barrel Select – Double Double Pinot Noir, 57.5% ABV. Highbank has emerged as the top craft whiskey producer in America and has won first prize in the American Blended Whiskey Show, along with numerous double gold medals for its other American Blended Whiskeys.

The 2023 SFWSC judging marked the largest gold and double gold American Whiskey medalist class in SFWSC history. The American single malt whiskey category has grown exponentially and is an important new category of American whiskey. A complete list of all medal winners for the 2023 San Francisco World Spirits Competition can be found on the Tasting Alliance’s website.

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