Barrier Island distillery Island Gin has won big at the 2022 San Francisco World Spirits Competition, widely considered to be the absolute pinnacle for spirits awards globally. In recent years, Island Gin has scooped local awards too, including the NZ Spirits Innovation Award in 2020. But it’s the international reputation and achievement that means something to the whole industry. Island Gin’s Andi Ross said that recognition at the San Francisco World Spirits Competition highlights what the New Zealand Spirits industry is achieving on the world stage. “This recognition may well open the door to the US market for Island Gin,” says Andi.
Island Gin won double gold for its distinctive New Zealand made Original Gin, the only New Zealand spirits brand to win a double gold. Island Gin was also awarded a gold medal for its Navy Strength Gin. Double Gold awards go to entries that receive a gold medal rating from all members of the judging panel, indicating that they are among the finest products in the world. Gold medals are awarded to exceptional spirits near the pinnacle of achievement that set the standard for their categories.
“The San Francisco World Spirits Competition is one of the most prestigious spirits awards globally,” says Caroline Ashford, (also known as The Gin Queen). “To win a Double Gold medal means that the judges have unanimously agreed on the excellence of the product. For a growing brand, this is a significant win against a highly competitive field of entrants from all over the world.” Island Gin has garnered numerous awards since its launch in 2020. Andi recently sent the first export consignment of Island Gin to Melbourne for sale exclusively via the Gin Society.
Island Gin has a distinctive bottle inspired by the kina, is powered off-grid by solar including the bottling machine and wherever possible strives for a zero-waste production cycle, something that poses a challenge for any distillery let alone one running off-grid. It’s this distinctive tenacity and an exceptional product that have earned Andi high accolades and praise within the distilling community here in Aotearoa. Congratulations Andi – what a great way to celebrate World Gin Month nearly being upon us.
Best of Class and Best in Show results from the competition will be released in June 2022.