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IWSC celebrates cocktail culture

The International Wine & Spirit Competition has added a fresh slant for its gin and vodka entrants in 2015 with the launch of a challenge to find the best Bloody Mary and gin & tonic.

The new categories see the competition team up with Big Tom spiced tomato juice and upmarket mixer brand Fever Tree. Open to gin and vodka products which have been entered into the main competition, this cocktail challenge will feature a judging panel headed by Harvey Nichols’ wine & spirits buyer Ivan Dixon.

This move to highlight these categories’ cocktail credentials comes on the back of significant activity in this corner of the spirit sector, with the IWSC seeing a 50% increase in gin entries last year.

In addition, recent IWSC trophy winners such as Finlandia Vodka, Belvedere, Adnam’s Longshore Vodka, Hendrick’s Gin, Bourbon Barreled Big Gin and William Chase Gin show the diversity of origin and style now available.

As a further move to support its spirit entries, 2015 also sees the IWSC launch a category to recognise the best examples of spirits packaging.

Commenting on these new additions to the competition, IWSC general manager Ewan Lacey said: “We are really excited to have teamed up with Fever-Tree and Big Tom to find the world’s best Gin & Tonic and Bloody Mary. Consumers are demanding the best quality cocktails and ingredients used in them. We can’t wait to discover the world’s best!”

The deadline for all spirit entries is 15 May, with the winners announced at the annual IWSC spirits tasting in July. For more information, visit

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