Announcing TEXSOM International Wine Awards 2021
Dallas, Texas —James Tidwell MS, owner and producer of TEXSOM International Wine Awards, announces entries are open for judging and awards consideration for the 2021 competition to be held April 25-27, 2021 at the Four Seasons Resort and Club Dallas at Las Colinas. A new addition to this year’s judging is the inclusion of spirits (whiskey, gin, vodka, etc.), pre-mixed cocktails, cocktail components, and bitters. The competition has an improved, more tailored entry experience for sake, cider, and mead producers, all beverages judged in previous years, allowing for greater differentiation.
The following is a timeline with corresponding entry fees:
Wine: $95 + 4 bottles per online entry
Late Submission Period
Wine: $105 + 4 bottles per online entry
“Spirits have played an important role in the beverage industry and mixology, and now there are operating craft distillers in all 50 states and over 1,000 internationally,” says Donaji Lira, Events Manager for TEXSOM. “The addition of spirits to the Awards will help to increase exposure not only of craft distillers, but also classic distillers. Now is a good time to include this important category, given the changing nature of the hospitality industry and evolving roles in restaurants and retail.”
“Improvements to our submissions experience for mead, cider, and sake entrants, as well as the addition of spirits, add to our strategic value for returning Awards winners and new prospective entrants,” says Amie Hendrickson, Operations Manager for TEXSOM. “In spite of the significant challenges we face as an industry in 2021, our team is devoted to the exceptional standards of care our entrants, judges, volunteers, and participants have come to expect. We offer entrants a consistent place to showcase their offerings and welcome new and returning representative producers from all 50 US States and numerous countries.”
Maximilian Kast MS is based in North Carolina and serves as the Director of Education and Sales NC/SC at import company, Broadbent Selections. He states, “I have never seen such a high concentration of the best palates in the country at one place in my life. Wineries that receive awards from the competition can be assured that the best of the best deliberated tirelessly on those decisions.”
“Folks in Idaho last year were thrilled with the response to their entries at TEXSOM,” says Eric Degerman, president and CEO of Great Northwest Wine. “A number of Idaho producers have stopped submitting new releases to some publications because they question if Idaho wines are evaluated under blind conditions, which is another reason why the showing of Idaho wines at your competition — featuring arguably the most prestigious panel of judges in the U.S. — is important to that emerging wine region.”
Alexandra Cherniavsky, an Advanced Sommelier and Wine Consultant from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania shares, “TEXSOM IWA gave me a larger world perspective and insight into who the important producers were in individual parts of the world and what grapes were important there.” Cherniavsky, a previous multi-year participant in the TEXSOM Sommelier Retreat and a 2020 TEXSOM IWA volunteer continues, “It gave me wines to recommend at every price point and a working knowledge of Texas wines, something I never would have been exposed to otherwise.”
In 2015 TEXSOM International Wine Awards combined the logistics team and infrastructure of an historical competition with the influence and power of the TEXSOM brand. The competition has grown more than 33% and seen diversification to 32 countries and 18 U.S. states represented, spanning suggested retail pricing from U.S. $2.99 to over U.S. $700, and vintages as old as 36 years. Previous results are available through the TEXSOM International Wine Awards website searchable database.
TEXSOM International Wine Awards contributes to the global conversation of beverage, amplifies classic and emerging regions, and builds exposure and interest for all invested in the experience. A unique range of benefits for Award winners includes:
The TEXSOM International Wine Awards team looks forward to working with the industry to identify and champion wines and beverages of quality and distinction from around the world. Distribution in Texas is NOT required to enter the competition, and TEXSOM IWA can assist international wineries in obtaining COLA Waivers. Wineries interested in submitting entries may visit the updated entrant submission page with easy-to-follow steps, fees and requirements here. Further inquiries may be made by email@example.com or calling 214-886-1665. An overview of the 2020 competition is available here.
Founded in 2005, TEXSOM promotes professional wine service standards, outlines paths for further wine education and certification, and raises public awareness about the professional standards and certifications for sommeliers. Today, the conference draws more than 1,000 attendees. In April 2014 the TEXSOM group purchased one of the largest, most respected, and longest-running competitions in the United States now known as the TEXSOM International Wine Awards.
Earlier this year, in April, I attended the Universal Whisky Experience in Las Vegas. Besides tasting the new, rare and old, attendees also had opportunities to take classes. In one of my classes two people sitting next to me pulled out their own tasting glasses – a stemless, fat rounded shape with a wide lip at the top – as opposed to using the Glencairn crystal glasses – wider at the bottom than the top, a tall tulip shape – the majority of us were given and used for evaluation.
I had seen a lot of aficionados bringing their own glassware at events, so this was of no surprise to me. But when we left the class one of them handed me a fresh clean glass as a gift, along with a one-page information sheet. I quickly learned that no less than 20 spirit competitions had adopted the Neat tasting glass and six of my spirit mentors loved them…it was definitely my turn to give it a whirl.
It’s taken me a few months to get around to trying out their glass. But what I read intrigued me: the reduction of alcohol burn on the nose and numbing, which could only increase the enjoyment of tasting. As I almost always add a dribble of water to a rare whisky or a large cube to an every day one, I don’t have the burning or numbing problem often. But I do at events. So, here goes, and onto my test.
Aromas from Neat vs. the Glencairn
Instructions from Neat: 1. Hold glass level, nose in center of “sweet spot” at rim level, and sniff. 2. Move nose to rim edge to detect diluted alcohol (less nose burn). 3. Breathe through nose (closed mouth), do not add water. Placing nose in neck will detect nose-numbing alcohol as in traditional glasses.
Bunnahabhain 12 YO
No water or ice added, got the definite usual nose burn as expected.
Bunnahabhain 12 YO
No nose burn – if done as indicated.
In case you are wondering, the aromas were pretty much the same for me in either glass – in this first test. While one testimony claimed that the Neat glass makes the aromas “enhancing” I could only agree as it masks the numbing alcohol agent. Another reviewer also found it to “enhance” in a food pairing, and again, I thought, heck ya, as the alcohol isn’t overwhelming the palate.
I also did have to agree with reviewers that found the glass to heighten the “purity” of any spirit, dissipating the “alcohol aroma to pick up subtleties in spirits like vodka” and I now looked forward to trying my Neat glass with different brands of vodkas, a spirit that is widely “enhanced” with many different flavors in many different cocktails. I had done a vodka tasting years ago, and many of my guests were only able to discern the amount of harshness in a vodka; it took a lot of tasting to finally get them to notice if there were other subtle flavor differences, which left me to wonder: How would my next vodka tasting go with these glasses? Something to ponder…for now I will do my pondering over the Bunnahabhain…in my Neat glass.
From the Website
In 2003, a simple glass blowing mistake created an amazing shape which displays the true expression of spirits, and launched a new, scientific approach to glass design, which we call Naturally Engineered Aroma Technology (NEAT).
Studying human olfactory physiology and applying physical and chemistry science, we unlocked the hidden dimensions of distilled spirits with a glass that enhances drinking pleasure, enjoyment, and diagnostics. Nine years, fifty two design revisions, hundreds of tastings and aroma profile studies developed NEAT, the perfect spirits glass.
Taste the Truth: Taste and aroma are true measures of a spirit’s quality. Alcohol burn numbs the nose and overwhelms the truth, spoiling your drinking experience. Neat eliminates nose burn and numbing, enhancing ability to detect, savor, and enjoy the subtle, wonderful aromas the distiller intended.
Science Drives Design, and Form Follows Function: NEAT was tested against other spirits glasses under controlled, uniform conditions by University of Nevada at Las Vegas (UNLV) Chemistry Department to verify results. Science built a better glass.
Eve Bushman has a Level Two Intermediate Certification from the Wine and Spirits Education Trust (WSET), a “certification in first globally-recognized course” as an American Wine Specialist ® from the North American Sommelier Association (NASA), Level 1 Sake Award from WSET, was the subject of a 60-minute Wine Immersion video (over 15k views), authored “Wine Etiquette for Everyone” and has served as a judge for the Long Beach Grand Cru and the Global Wine Awards. You can email Eve@EveWine101.com to ask a question about wine or spirits.
SPOKANE, WASH. (PRWEB) – Distillery University, the long-time provider of online and hands-on education for craft distillers, announced they would be offering a new Tasting Competition for the industry with a unique twist. Unlike other similar competitions, entrants would be limited to those licensed distilleries that have been in business for five years or less (international entries are also permitted). Registrations are opening soon for a variety of competitive categories, with the Competition taking place in May 2021 in Spokane, WA.
“Our goal is to create a platform for new distillers to get the insight, promotion and exposure they might not otherwise have access to.” – Rockwell Rutter, CEO, Distillery University.
With other competitions, the winner’s circle is often dominated by big brands and deep pockets; they’ve had years with which to perfect their recipes and can afford top-quality ingredients. This can make it difficult for the startups and new operations to compete at the same level. Distillery University plans to level the playing field by offering the truly talented small distilleries a chance to show off their best products and get some well-deserved promotion. At the same time, this is a great opportunity for those same distilleries to get an unbiased critique and analysis of their spirits from a group of experts.
Providing that analysis will be a blind panel of approximately 15 judges, all hand-picked by DU as leaders in their respective fields. For example, the judging panel will include sommeliers, brewers, chefs, journalists, bartenders and more. Over the course of several days in May 2021, these judges will critically sample each spirit submission and provide not only a rating score, but also tasting notes that will be released to the distillery. Distilleries will be awarded medals based on their resulting scores, while select winners will be offered a product placement meeting with a large spirits retailer.
“We believe the Next Great Distillery has yet to be found, and this is how we plan to do it.” – Rockwell Rutter, CEO, Distillery University
Distillery University is the premier provider of online and hands-on education for craft distillers. Since 2012 they have offered a fully comprehensive curriculum for those wishing to enter the industry, or those with a desire to broaden their existing skillset. Distillery University’s nearly 1500 students enjoy a wide range of course topics, covering everything from product development to business management. Students can choose to learn online through self-paced video courses, livestreaming webinars, or in-person at a multi-day Hands-on Workshop. Distillery University’s main goal is to make it as easy as possible for true craft distillers to realize their dream of making phenomenal spirits in a successful business.
LOS ANGELES (PRWEB) – Guillotine Vodka Originale is one of the few spirits who managed to be rewarded with a gold medal at the prestigious Spirits Selection by Concours Mondial de Bruxelles. This is the 3rd gold medal won by Guillotine Vodka Originale at Spirits Selection by Concours Mondial De Bruxelles, following wins in 2017 and 2018. The 21st Spirits Selection competition recently ended in Brussels, Belgium. This year, the judges complied with very strict safety rules to ensure the event could happen. Sixty professional judges tasted and rated up to 35 alcoholic beverages a day. A total of 1,400 spirits from 54 countries competed to win a medal.
Spirits Selection by Concours Mondial de Bruxelles is THE international event rewarding only the most extraordinary spirits, such as Guillotine Vodka Originale, from all over the globe. Each year, whiskies, cognacs, brandies, rums, vodkas, gins, piscos, grappas, baijius, and tequilas, amongst other spirits, are assessed and classified by a panel of internationally renowned experts. World-renowned judges are rigorously chosen to blind taste the finest spirits.
Guillotine Vodka Originale is a classic, clear vodka made from the finest Champagne-region grapes. Light, smooth, and aromatic, this amazing vodka offers notes of citrus with hints of almond and toffee. The nose is sharp, punctuated by soft notes of fresh lemon. The spirit delicately coats the mid-palate, exposing a complex structure that flows into a clean and well-balanced finish. Customers should carefully taste and enjoy this fine spirit to find that the smooth and velvety palate delivers a light fruity hint of Zante currants.
Guillotine Vodka Originale‘s creation starts with a mix of the finest ingredients and traditional crafting methods. The vodkas’ distinctive je ne sais quoi starts with selected ingredients and experienced artisans, who utilize traditional grape picking and processing techniques that lend themselves to creating complex and powerful flavors. The unique taste and finish of Guillotine Vodka Originale is the result of mingling white and black grapes. Only the finest Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier, and Chardonnay marcs are chosen from vineyards in the Aÿ-Champagne wine region to create this extraordinary spirit. The grape marcs are fermented and slowly distilled in a 100-year-old distillery. This process follows the standards of traditional French expertise that preserve the subtleties of the fruit. Finally, the vodka is then transported to a warehouse in Ile-de-France where the vodka is bottled in locally sourced, custom-made glassware.
Guillotine Vodka Originale offers unparalleled quality, taste, and versatility. A favorite among fine spirits connoisseurs, this ultra-premium vodka has been rewarded multiple gold medals at various international spirits competitions. In 2019, Guillotine Vodka Originale was awarded the gold medal at the 2019 Cathay Pacific Hong Kong International Wine & Spirit competition. It’s a testament to the brand’s commitment to quality that it has now received the honor of another gold medal from the Spirits Selection by Concours Mondial De Bruxelles.
About Guillotine Vodka
Guillotine is a revolutionary French vodka created exclusively from the Aÿ-Champagne region’s finest pinot and chardonnay grapes. Founded by Paul Berkmann in 2016, the brand’s mission is to introduce the world to the finest artisanal spirits, starting with ultra-premium vodkas that are unparalleled in quality, taste, and joie de vivre. Guillotine is 100% natural, vegan-friendly and gluten-free, containing no coloring or flavoring additives, no glycerol, and no citric acid. Visit http://www.guillotinevodka.com to learn more.
I’ve tasted a lot of vodka over the years. Flavorless and colorless are two descriptors assigned to it most often in spirit education courses. But, when you taste vodka over a period of time you can detect certain nuances, things that make them differ, and in the case with Neft, stand above the pack.
For most tasters, beginners to experts, it’s the alcohol burn that sets them apart. Inexpensive vodka can be quite harsh – lots of burn – while other more sought after brands – have little to no burn, but also have some interesting qualities. Neft is one of those.
When my sample arrived I was immediately surprised at the tin container it came in. Did some reading and learned that the tin cylinder leaves less of a carbon imprint, it’s not breakable and will stay cold longer. The sample also came with instructions for tasting. As I’ve said I’ve tasted plenty, but in the essence of a true vodka lover I followed their suggestions: how long to chill it, the type of glass to use, to try alone and not in a cocktail, how to nose the vodka, etc. This is the result:
As instructed we didn’t freeze, only chilled in freezer for an hour before sampling. Tasted neat and in a small glass:
Observation in glass: clear and clean, like a finely filtered water. No minerals or impurities.
Aroma from two inches away and swirling: reminded me of a a very fine sake, like a daiginjo where the sake rice has been milled down to 50%. With a gentle sweetness, as well as a creaminess, and some slightly buttery and even nutty notes.
Flavor: Smooth, burn on the mid palate only and not immediate. Still reminding me of a fine cold sake but of course, this is definitely a smooth and creamy vodka. The mouthfeel makes me want to sip alone, not masked by ingredients in a cocktail or even with ice. If I hold on the palate, the way whisky master blender Richard Patterson instructs for tasting single malt scotch, the mouthfeel only becomes rounder and more balanced.
Conclusion: This is not your mother’s vodka. This is a whole new generation, and a new level, of sippingvodka. 99 Eve points.
NEFT IS MADE FROM THE PUREST INGREDIENTS
NEFT is made from only four non-GMO European ryes and the purest water from the Austrian Alps. No additives. No sweeteners.
Our four grains of ancient rye species (Amato, Askari, Rasant and Pollino) are used in our proprietary blend. When brought together, the result is an award-winning taste with unprecedented smoothness.
It takes fifty years for the water we use to make its way from its source to our secured aquifer. During this time, gravity slowly draws the most important ingredient of our vodka through slate and granite. As it slowly seeps through crystalline rock, it’s purified for decades creating the purest water in the world.
NEFT USES SMALL-BATCH DISTILLING
- NEFT is distilled in Lustenau, Austria near the Rhine River and Switzerland Border.
- Our distillery has been perfecting small-batch, curated spirits for over 130 years.
- NEFT is distilled three times in a copper-pot still.
- We use a proprietary activated, carbon-layer filtration process.
NEFT IS AWARD WINNING
Double Gold, San Francisco World Spirits Competition, 2019 & 2018
Best Vodka, San Francisco World Spirits Competition, 2018
98-point rating, The Tasting Panel
92-point rating & Gold Medal, Beverage Testing Institute
Gold Medal, The Fifty Best
Gold Medal, Best Tasting Spirits
Eve Bushman has a Level Two Intermediate Certification from the Wine and Spirits Education Trust (WSET), a “certification in first globally-recognized course” as an American Wine Specialist ® from the North American Sommelier Association (NASA), Level 1 Sake Award from WSET, was the subject of a 60-minute Wine Immersion video (over 16k views), authored “Wine Etiquette for Everyone” and has served as a judge for the Long Beach Grand Cru and the Global Wine Awards. You can email Eve@EveWine101.com to ask a question about wine or spirits
NEW YORK (PRWEB) – Consejo Regulador de Vinos de Jerez and Manzanilla – Sherry’s governing council – aka Sherry Wines, congratulates Jen LaForge who claimed the first ever Amateur Mixology Challenge crown and the $3,000 cash prize. The competition, which wholly took place online, pitted five exceptional contestants against one another who were chosen out of more than 100 sherry cocktail entries. The two runner-ups received $1,500 and $500 respectively.
The Sherry Amateur Mixology Challenge teamed up with VinePair to promote and educate consumers on all things sherry as well as showcase the versatility of the fortified wine through cocktails. Three expert judges, esteemed mixologist Shannon Mustipher, sherry educator Chantal Tseng and VinePair founder Adam Teeter, scored the cocktails based on a number of factors including creativity, flavor balance and their use and knowledge of their chosen sherry. Jen’s Otoño Fizz was a standout amongst the competition, utilizing Fino Sherry, Dussé VSOP, carrot cordial, lemon, Aquafaba and soda for an unforgettable and savory take on a fizz.
ABOUT SHERRY WINES
Sherry is a fortified wine which can only be produced in the “Sherry Triangle” – formed by the towns of Jerez de la Frontera, El Puerto de Santa Maria, and Sanlucar de Barrameda in the province of Cadiz, south-western Spain. The Consejo Regulador’s role is to protect the Denomination of Origin (DO) Jerez-Xerex-Sherry and Manzanilla-Sanlucar de Barrameda, ensuring that no wine from any other geographical area is sold as Sherry wine. DO Jerez-Xerex-Sherry and Manzanilla-Sanlucar de Barrameda is the oldest DO in Spain, and has 2,800 wine-growers. Wine has been produced in the area since Roman times, and Sherry has been exported around the world since the 16th century.
VinePair is the largest digital media company delivering accessible, entertaining, and inspiring content about drinks and the experiences you have with a glass in hand.
NEW YORK (PRWEB) – The Long Drink, a top selling category of alcohol in Finland, a legend that is now available in America, has expanded distribution to California, Florida and Arizona. The expansion announcement comes shortly after universally recognized music producer Kygo and renowned PGA tour professional golfer Rickie Fowler joined the company as co-owners earlier this year. With the expansion to new states, via Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits, more consumers are able to enjoy the unique and refreshing Long Drink taste.
The availability of Long Drink across California, Florida and Arizona marks a significant development period for the brand from a marketing and sales perspective as Miles, Kygo and Rickie have deep ties to each state and will be maximizing their networks on behalf of their brand to ensure its success. Additionally, the Palm Tree Crew, a diversified holding company that operates and invests in companies at the intersection of consumer, entertainment and technology, of which Kygo is a co-founder, alongside Myles Shear and Austin Criden, is working closely with Long Drink’s marketing and business development teams to integrate the brand into the fabric of the tropical lifestyle in California, Arizona, and Florida.
“Long Drink is an incredibly unique drink with a rich history, and I couldn’t be more excited to get it in the hands of consumers across the country. The combination of taste and buzz is undeniable and soon everyone will have the opportunity to enjoy the Finnish Fuel. Kippis!” says Miles Teller, actor and co-owner of The Long Drink.
The category of ‘long drinks’ was brought to America for the first time in early 2018 by the next generation of Finns, co-founders Ere Partanen, Sakari Manninen and Mikael Taipale, alongside American entrepreneur, Evan Burns, who wanted the world to experience the refreshing and unique Finnish Long Drink. Teller joined the company as a co-owner in the summer of 2019, with Fowler and Kygo joining earlier in 2020.
“Since officially becoming a part of the Long Drink team in early 2020, the Palm Tree Crew has continued to be impressed by the operational excellence of the Long Drink team and our partners at Southern Glazer’s. With the launch of two of the largest liquor markets happening now, we are confident that our superior tasting product is primed to take over the ready to drink cocktail space. We hope to be able to share a cold Long Drink with our friends and fans as soon as it is deemed safe,” say Palm Tree Crew.
Most recently, The Long Drink was awarded medals at the prestigious 2020 New York International Spirits Competition, 2020 San Francisco World Spirits Competition, and the 2020 American Distilling Institute, among others.
“We get messages daily from our fans asking when they’d be able to buy Long Drink in California, Florida or Arizona,” says Evan Burns, co-founder and CEO of The Long Drink. “In partnership with Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits, residents of CA, FL and AZ are now able to go out and start buying Long Drink at their favorite liquor store chain or independent store.”
The roots of long drinks go back to the 1952 Summer Games in Helsinki, when the country of only 4 million people was still recovering from World War II. Concerned how to serve drinks quickly enough to all the visitors, the government commissioned the creation of a revolutionary new liquor drink that was both delicious and fast to serve – and so the first long drinks were born.
The Long Drink combines the origins of the past with the modern-day processing and technology of the future. The result is an award-winning, refreshing, citrus soda with a premium liquor kick. Canned at 5.5% Alc./Vol. Last year, The Long Drink introduced Long Drink Zero, a low-calorie option, and earlier this year debuted additional variants including Long Drink Strong, a higher ABV option, and Long Drink Cranberry.
About The Long Drink
“Long drink” is a top selling category of alcohol in Finland – a legend that is now available in America. The roots of long drinks go back to the 1952 Summer Games in Helsinki, when the country of only 4 million people was still recovering from World War II. Concerned how to serve drinks quickly enough to all the visitors, the government commissioned the creation of a revolutionary new liquor drink that was both delicious and fast to serve – and so the first long drinks were born. Now this legend has finally been brought to America by the next generation of Finns who want the world to experience the refreshing and unique Finnish Long Drink. The Long Drink garnered a Gold Medal (94 Rating) at the prestigious 2019 New York International Spirits Competition (NYISC). The Long Drink is currently available in Massachusetts, Connecticut, Georgia, Nevada, New York, New Jersey, Ohio, Texas, California, Florida and Arizona.
ST. PETERSBURG, FLA. (PRWEB) – The Kozuba family began their humble distillation journey in Poland when Zbigniew “Papa” Kozuba, now Founder and Master Distiller, was tinkering with traditional Polish cordials. In 2014, Papa and his sons Matthias and Jacob Kozuba moved the operation to the states to build upon tradition, innovate, and grow their spirits business in the American market. Since their move, the Kozuba family has become one of Florida’s most well-respected and premier, family-owned craft distilleries. True to their reputation, Kozuba & Sons Distillery was named 2020 Florida Distillery of the Year by the New York International Spirits Competition.
The New York International Spirits Competition 2020 Florida Distillery of the Year award recognizes the leadership of Kozuba & Sons Distillery, their expert craftsmanship and high-quality spirits created at their St. Petersburg-based facility. “We are very honored to have received this award,” Matthias Kozuba, Founder, CMO and Distiller says. “We have seen a lot of growth in the past six years, and we are proud of the premium spirits we craft, as we honor our family tradition.”
Kozuba & Sons Distillery utilizes recycled water, distributes spent grain to local farmers to eliminate waste, and operates their steam-heated stills by way of a gas-powered boiler to limit energy consumption. These measures reduce their overall emissions and set a positive example for the spirits industry. In addition, their B Square Vodka, Coast Vodka, and Camo Box Vodka all feature “bag-in-box” Better Planet Packaging. This packaging creates less pollution and has higher levels of recyclability. Along with their sustainable packaging, Kozuba & Sons Distillery aims to educate and encourage consumers to learn about sustainable packaging, recycled materials, and reducing package waste in the spirits industry.
“As a small, family-operated craft distillery, we are thoughtful with our approach to distilling our spirits, as well as the environmental impact of our operation,” says Papa. “From our packaging to our water use and energy conservation practices, we take a holistic approach to sustainability.”
Kozuba & Sons Distillery has received numerous accolades this year that honor their craft distillery and premium spirits. The arts and culture newspaper, Creative Loafing Tampa Bay, bestowed upon them the “Best Distillery” award in their Best of the Bay Awards issue. And the New York International Spirits Competition yielded impressive results for their Kozuba High Wheat Rye Whiskey 6 Years Old, with a Gold Medal. They also received Bronze Medals for their Starkus Light Whiskey, Cranberry & Juniper Vodka, and corn-based Vodka. Now, as the 2020 Florida Distillery of the Year, Kozuba & Sons Distillery offers a variety of award-winning spirits, including vodka, whiskey, bourbon, and traditional Polish cordials.
About Kozuba & Sons Distillery
Founded in 2005 in Poland, Kozuba & Sons is a family-run distillery that produces premium spirits. Now at home in St. Petersburg with over 15 years of experience, the Kozubas are focused on sharing their passion with the American market, beginning with Florida. Kozuba & Sons’ handcrafted, small-batch spirits are made from the finest ingredients using meticulous processes. Each bottle possesses the trademark Kozuba essence: a striking combination of quality, craftsmanship, and taste. To learn more about the Kozuba & Sons Distillery, please visit http://www.kozubadistillery.com or find them on Facebook and Instagram: @KozubaDistillery
Hundreds of judges and industry experts across the globe blind-tasted Purity Vodka, Purity Spritz, and Purity Gin. The results coming out of multiple prestigious competitions were remarkably consistent, GOLD.
ULTIMATE SPIRIT CHALLENGE RESULTS
- Purity Connoisseur 51 Reserve Organic Vodka Awarded 96 points – Extraordinary Ultimate Recommendation 2020
- Selected as “Top 100 Spirit” – the only organic spirit selected as a Top 100 Spirit 2020
INTERNATIONAL SPIRITS CHALLENGE RESULTS
- Purity Connoisseur 51 Reserve Organic Vodka – Double Gold Medal Winner 2020
- Purity Navy Strength Organic Gin – Double Gold medal Winner 2020
- Purity Connoisseur 51 Reserve Organic Vodka – Trophy winner 2019 (World´s best organic vodka)
- Purity Connoisseur 51 Reserve Organic Vodka – Gold medalist 2019
- Purity Old Tom Organic Gin – Gold Medalist 2016
INTERNATIONAL WINE AND SPIRITS CHALLENGE
- Purity Navy Strength Organic Gin Awarded 95 points – Gold Medalist 2020
- Purity Mediterranean Citrus Spritz Awarded 95 points – Gold Medalist 2020
- Purity Connoisseur 51 Reserve Organic Vodka – Trophy winner 2017 (Best vodka in the world)
- Purity Connoisseur 51 Reserve Organic Vodka – Gold Medalist 2017
- Purity Signature 34 Edition Organic Vodka – Gold Medalist 2017
“It is humbling and gratifying to watch so many experts choose Purity completely based on taste,” said Master Blender Mathias Tönnesson. “It takes extra time, care, and attention to source superior ingredients then carefully distill them, it’s reassuring when others recognize the Purity taste shining through.”
Mathias continues,” We distill our spirit very, very slowly, many times, in a specially designed copper still. It can be compared to when you slowly cook your food at a low temperature. It brings the most taste, character, and depth to the spirit and it’s a process that other brands don’t bother with. For Purity, every step matter because the taste matters. Our goal is to make the best tasting spirit in the world and make products we are proud to sell and to serve to our family and friends.
Our main ingredients, Swedish wheat, and malted barley are carefully selected without any chemical cultivation or processing. We believe that by using organic ingredients it creates a much better-tasting spirit, and of course, is better for mother nature. We also value the quality of the water that we use and believe it’s crucial to the taste. Most brands use only distilled water, which removes any of the natural nuances, sediments, and flavors that help bring out the complexity of the vodka. At Purity, we use naturally soft Swedish water, and as a result, it blends with the other ingredients creating a complex, characterful, and truly unique spirit.”
PURITY CONNOISSEUR 51 RESERVE ORGANIC VODKA
For more information please visit www.PurityDistillery.com
A few weeks ago on this blog I wrote about many of the things we’ve been doing during our stay-at-home time with the virus, and many of the things we’ve missed. It seemed that my Facebook feed has been filled with lamentations regarding missed anniversary trips, important graduations, birthdays and other milestones. For me, and most of us in the wine and spirit industry, we rely on tastings/events/classes for continuing education, as well as fodder for our blogs. For the consumer it may be the same, for the non-profit leader the loss of these events have been devastating.
In today’s article I will explore some of the events we didn’t have, and what we missed by not having them. (At press time these are the events that have either canceled for 2020 altogether, or have postponed further into 2020 with no possible way to know if their event will, indeed, actually take place.)
Wine on the Roof and Cocktails on the Roof are particularly devastating to me as I helped create both events to benefit our local middle schools and high schools in the Hart District. And while the rooftop format does allow for quite a bit of spacing, they still both attract a crowd, so not sure if the postponed dates for this year will happen.
The Santa Barbara Culinary Experience was poised to take place this past March 13. Cancelled the same week it was to occur, as many of the experiences allowed for many guests traveling from one spot to another.
The Paso Robles Cab Collective is an educational experience that is limited to some press and the public. The event focuses on the Cab and red Bordeaux varietals being grown in the area. I’ve learned a lot from past events and have come to respect the winemakers that are working very hard to get attention to their respective varietals in AVAs that have been more known for Rhônes and Zinfandel.
The Universal Whisky Experience was to have its 10th annual event this past April in Las Vegas. There are classes with distillers and brand ambassadors as well as one of the best whisky tasting events I’ve covered. Missed rubbing elbows with all of the whisky aficionados and learning from the best in the field.
Also missing a milestone year was the 5th Annual Masters of Taste that is the only event held on the field of the Pasadena Rose Bowl with top notch taste masters and beverage masters. “100% of event proceeds support Union Station Homeless Services, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit helping individuals and families rebuild their lives and end homelessness.”
Art Beyond the Glass, another cocktail event, was canceled but they were able to offer a virtual event. The live event is a special treat as dozens of bartenders dress up in themed costumes, there is live music, art displays and a bartending competition where each team tries to create the best cocktail. “Proceeds from every ABTG event are donated to a local arts-based nonprofit. To date, ABTG has raised more than $210,000 for cultural nonprofits in L.A. and across the country.”
The many Garagiste Festivals, voted best wine festivals in the U.S., were sorely missed. I enjoyed the educational seminars as well as tasting and talking with many small-producing winemakers. “The festivals are produced by Garagiste Events, a non-profit dedicated to furthering the education of future winemakers and those training for employment within the wine industry. Proceeds from the festivals support the Garagiste Festival Scholarship fund of the California Polytechnic State University at San Luis Obispo Wine and Viticulture Department.”
Many lesser known wineries and distilleries benefit from entering their bottles in various wine and spirit competitions. As a wine judge myself I know that they not only want an expert opinion on their wine/spirits, they also use their awards in their various marketing materials. At press time I did see that at least one had taken place live with social distancing.
I’m sure there are dozens of events that aren’t on my radar, and have been equally missed, especially events at wineries that are important for bottle sales and gaining wine club members.
I will leave you with this thought: If you can afford it support it. I have hyperlinked many of the non-profits above so you can check out what they do, and maybe you can make a donation or two if you are able to. If you have favorite wineries or distilleries please consider bottles purchases to support them as well.
Eve Bushman has a Level Two Intermediate Certification from the Wine and Spirits Education Trust (WSET), a “certification in first globally-recognized course” as an American Wine Specialist ® from the North American Sommelier Association (NASA), Level 1 Sake Award from WSET, was the subject of a 60-minute Wine Immersion video (over 16k views), authored “Wine Etiquette for Everyone” and has served as a judge for the Long Beach Grand Cru and the Global Wine Awards. You can email Eve@EveWine101.com to ask a question about wine or spirits.