All Saints wins Museum Muscat Trophy at IWSC

July 21, 2022
By Ioni Doherty

Family-owned winery, All Saints Estate has won the Museum Muscat NV Trophy at the IWSC in the same year that it was awarded a perfect score in the 2022 Halliday Wine Companion.

Winemaker Nick Brown who runs the winery in Rutherglen with his two sisters, said, “It’s something we don’t expect but it’s a great accolade and a pat on the back for the work that’s gone into that wine, not only by myself, but also the previous winemakers over it’s 100 plus years of life.

“My dad bought the property in the nineties knowing how amazing the All Saints fortified wine has always been. He would go through notes he could find on each of the wines and these wines were particularly special because they were so rich, complex and concentrated, and considering their age as well.

“They are sort of unicorns I guess as far as the wine world goes. They have been looked after for so long by generations of winemakers over the years and in this particular building for over 100 years.”

Only four Australian wines received Gold medals at the IWSC: the All Saints Museum Muscat, Peccavi Wines Chardonnay 2019 (95 points), De Bortoli Old Boys 21 Year OId Barrel Aged Tawny NV (95 points), Penfolds Reserve Bin 20A Chardonnay 2020 (96 points).

It is a significant drop when compared to last year’s Gold Medal showing of 29 and 16 Golds in 2020.

However, in the Spirits category, our friends at William Grant & Sons were recognised as Distiller of the Year for the seventh year in a row. Grant’s 18-year-old also received the International Spirits Challenge Tasting Trophy, and Glenfiddich’s limited edition Chinese New Year gift pack received recognition for its design and packaging. William Grant & Sons received 81 medals overall and three trophies recognising quality across its entire brand portfolio, including 40 Gold and Double Gold.

Brian Kinsman, Master Blender said: “I am so proud that yet again, so many of our incredible brands have been recognised by the ISC with these globally-renowned awards. These acknowledgements are all down to our teams’ continued dedication and drive to ensure our drams remain the best in the valley, and we look forward to continuing this success over the years to come.”

Three Australian distilleries were shortlisted for the International Gin Producer of the Year trophy:

  • Granddad Jack’s Craft Distillery, Miami, Queensland
  • Kalki Moon Distillery, Bundaberg, Queensland
  • Naught Distilling, Melbourne, Victoria

Owner and head distiller at Naught, Chris Cameron, was delighted to have made the shortlist.

He said: “To be nominated for the IWSC International Gin Producer of the Year is very humbling and a great honour. We are incredibly grateful to be recognised amongst other amazing distilleries throughout Australia and the world. Hopefully, our nomination can further elevate the reputation of Australian made gins, showcasing to the world that we are indeed producers of the finest spirits available.”

The International Gin Producer of the Year will be announced in September.

Nine Australian Spirits received Gold medals. Never Never Distilling’s Argo Gin received 97 points with the judges notes saying, “ Light nose of peppercorn and coriander seed, moving to a big gin centre with soft fruit and tannins from the barrel. Sweetness on the finish backed up by the fruit concentration and texture. ” Sounds pretty delicious.

Also shortlisted for International Gin Producer of the Year, Queensland’s Kalki Moon received two Golds with Kylie’s Summer Gin and Kalki Moon Premium, both receiving 96 points along with Turner Stillhouse’s Three Cuts Pinot Barrel Rested Gin. The gins from this Turner’s in the Tamar Valley of Northern Tasmania is consistently recognised as among the best in the world.

Bass & Flinders Distillery in the Mornington Peninsula received 95 points for its Soft & Smooth Gin as did North of Eden’s Admiral Gin, The Tailor Made Spirits Company received 95 points for both its West Winds Pinque Rose Gin and its Plum Gin.

Lock 4 Distillery also received 95 points with its Triple Distilled Vodka gainin gold.

IWSC noted that entries into the Low & No Awards grew again this year, up by 225 per cent compared to 2021.

David T Smith, member of the IWSC’s Judging Committee comments: “There has been real progress made in the low alcohol space over the past couple of years. It is very clear that producers are putting some serious time, effort, and innovation into increasing quality.

“The judges tasted the full spectrum of low alcohol drinks, from beer to wine through to the spirits and what has been great to see is how very good some of the alternatives to what we consider traditional alcoholic beverages are, and for those created to be a substitute, how difficult it would be to tell the difference between some of them.”

Gold medal winners included:

  • 0% Merlot NV, Giesen, New Zealand
  • 7 Stewed Cherry & Coffee, NON, Australia
  • Ara Zero Sauvignon Blanc NV, Giesen, New Zealand

Special mention to Starward with its Left-Field Single Malt Whisky winning the Whisky Highball Trophy in 2022.

The IWSC introduced the new mixer category into the 2022 competition and specialist judging panel decided that the Left-Field Single Malt made for the best Whisky Highball when paired with Double Dutch Soda Water.

As well as to Diageo’s Bartender of 2021 Evan Stroeve who has produced Rhubi, described as Normandy-inspired Australian aperitif which won silver.

Mr Stroeve said: “We are chuffed to be recognised by IWSC. Taking home the silver medal in the mixing category where the judges blind tasted the liquid simply mixed with soda water just confirms the serve strategy and ethos of RHUBI – that it’s a well balanced product with complexity, which just needs to be served with soda water for the perfect spritz”.

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