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Ultimate Spirits Challenge 2019 Results Announced

A man at a whiskey tasting event sniffs a glass of whiskey while wearing a blue jumper and check blue shirt underneath

Ultimate Spirits Challenge has released the results of the 2019 challenge.

This year proved to be the ninth consecutive year of record entries from more than 45 spirit-producing nations. The competition was held at the Ultimate Beverage Challenge (UBC) Evaluation Center in Hawthorne, NY.

The judging, held throughout March and early April, determined 45 Chairman’s Trophy winners, and 236 finalists.

Jameson Bow Street Cask Strength 18 Years Old Batch 1 picked up the Blended award in the Whiskey – Ireland category, while Red Spot picked up the Single Pot Still Award, and Knappogue Castle 14 Year Old picked up the Single Malt Award.

All products are rated on a 100 point scale by a panel of judges that includes buyers, journalists, educators and bar owners. This year’s USC judges included: Founder/Judging Chairman F. Paul Pacult, Jacques Bezuidenhout, Tim Cooper, Tad Carducci, Dale DeGroff, Meaghan Dorman, Tyler Hudgens, Justin Lavenue, Don Lee, Clay Risen, Joaquin Simó, Charlotte Voisey, and Jillian Vose.

All spirits rated 80 points and higher receive an individual results page which provides all downloadable marketing material. Spirits rated 85 points and higher receive a tasting note. If a spirit is recommended for its category’s assigned cocktail, it is indicated on this page.

USC results are promoted globally. In addition, high scoring products are featured in the Ultimate Beverage Challenge Guide to the World’s Best Wines & Spirits in the October issue of Beverage Media, which reaches more than 70,000 on- and off-premise spirits buyers.

UBC Founder and Judging Director F. Paul Pacult said: “This year’s USC was genuinely international, with a dazzling array of quality distillates from 46 countries. Virtually all categories saw substantial gains in entries, especially baijiu, shochu, mezcal, and brandies from around the world. Since producers tend to send USC their better premium and super-premium marques, it’s clear that they look to us for the fairest, most accurate analytical data in the industry.

“And because USC is the only major international spirits competition that also evaluates spirits in cocktails to assess their mixability, the responsibility for our judges to render reliable results is paramount to USC’s mission”

Complete results can be viewed at

Food for Thought -, 59 Merrion Square, Dublin 2, Ireland.

The Official Publication of the Restaurants Association of Ireland


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