Producers in countries around the globe, from the US and Ireland to Taiwan and Japan, were again recognised in this year’s World Whiskies Awards.
The title of world’s best single malt went to the Old Pulteney 1989 Vintage produced at Pulteney Distillery in Wick in Scotland while Master of Malt’s Reference Series III.2 from Islay was named world’s best blended malt whisky.
Another scotch, Glenalba 22 Years Old Blended – from supermarket group Lidl – was named the world’s best blended limited-release whisky.
However, Japan triumphed in the category of world’s best blended whisky, won by Suntory’s Hibiki 21 Years Old – the fourth time it has won the award. The world’s best grain whisky was Japan’s The Fuji-Gotemba Distillery Single Grain 25 Years Old Small Batch.
Kavalan Solist Amontillado Sherry Single Cask Strength received the award for world’s best single cask single malt whisky – another triumph for the Taiwanese distillery.
The world’s best rye whiskey was named as Heaven Hill’s Pikesville Rye from Kentucky while the world’s best corn whisky was Balcones True Blue 100 Proof from the Balcones distillery in Texas.
The awards for best bourbons went to whiskeys made outside Kentucky: Abraham Bowman Pioneer Spirit from Sazerac Company’s A Smith Bowman Distillery in Virginia was named the world’s best bourbon whiskey while Smooth Ambler Old Scout from West Virginia won the award for the world’s best single-barrel bourbon whiskey.
Knob Creek Smoked Maple Whiskey, part of the Jim Beam portfolio of brands from Kentucky, was named world’s best flavoured whisky. Bernheim Original Straight Wheat Whiskey from Kentucky was named the world’s best wheat whiskey.
The title of world’s best Canadian blended whiskey went to Gooderham & Worts while Ireland’s Green Spot Château Léoville Barton was named world’s best single pot still whisky.
Now in its 10th year, the World Whiskies Awards, organised by Whisky Magazine, are chosen after rigorous blind tasting by expert judges.