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Results > 2024 Judge Comments, Platinum & Gold Spirits Award Winners

Absente
Absinthe Refined France $39.99 Platinum 94
“On-the-nose Absinthe, with a viscous mid, clean finish, long lingering anise and nice heat balance. No afterburn!” - Rich Cook
 
BACARDÍ
Reserva Ocho Rum, Sevillian Orange Finish, 2023 Puerto Rico $18.99 Platinum 98
“Funky fresh! This gets at bright orange character on the palate, with layered complexity and nice rum funk that cuts through it all. A fine solo sip.” - Rich Cook
Ron Superior Carta Blanca Puerto Rico $12.99 Gold 91
“The uncommon not-too-sweet white rum that is built for cocktailing, especially when so many other elements come with plenty of sugar. Nice!” - Rich Cook
 
Barley Creek Distillery
11:01 Original Vodka USA $24.00 Gold 91
“In spite of its corn base, this registers with a little more complexity, light sweetness, spice notes and good finish.” - Michael Cervin
 
Cierto Tequila
Reserve Collection Blanco Mexico $109.00 Gold 93
“Immediate agave on the nose, this hits the mark and gives off a spiciness on the finish.” - Michael Cervin
Private Collection Blanco Mexico $79.00 Gold 93
“Aggressive out of the gate, this is not shy about is agave, spiciness and potent ABV. Still nicely balanced and very enjoyable.” - Michael Cervin
Reserve Collection Añejo Mexico $179.00 Gold 93
“Balance of wood and agave is difficult to achieve, and this is a success. Rich wood tones hit just the right note with the agave maintaining its personality.” - Rich Cook
“A beautiful balance between agave, heat, oak - this offers terrific spiciness while maintaining a rustic quality. - Michael Cervin
Private Collection Reposado Mexico $99.00 Gold 91
“This is nice and creamy, and it maintains the agave character nicely - sippable and cocktail friendly.” - Rich Cook
Private Collection Extra Añejo Mexico $189.00 Gold 91
“A nice option for whiskey fans looking to see what Tequila is about that won't shock like a blanco. Nicely realized.” - Rich Cook
“An Añejo that's not overoaked, this offers plenty of agave notes, spiciness and a tactile smoothness. - Michael Cervin
Reserve Collection Extra Añejo Mexico $289.00 Gold 90
“Rich wood tones almost overwhelm the agave character, but it peeks out in the finish to let you know what it is.” - Rich Cook
 
Conte Camillo
Classic Negroni Italy $39.99 Gold 92
“This hits the 'no brainer' Negroni mix nicely - it's 1-1-1, and that's all you need. Orange Zest please!” - Rich Cook
 
Courvoisier
XO Cognac France $200.00 Platinum 97
“This is the goods - a model for the type, with a finish that won't quit 'til tomorrow.” - Rich Cook
“Rich, mature, skooth and complex, this is what cognac is all about, a mix of fruit, wood, spice and floral notes.” - Michael Cervin
 
 
VSOP Cognac France $42.00 Gold 93
“Solid VSOP, rich, bright, long, fruited, nut, soft wood spice, vanilla - it's all here.” - Rich Cook
XO Royal Cognac France $285.00 Gold 93
“This is on the aggressive side for Cognac, and I'm sure that will grab a segment of the cognoscenti - well made, just different.” - Rich Cook
“Solid entry, aggressive and bold, making a statement. All the cognac components are there.” - Michael Cervin
 
 
VS Cognac France $30.00 Gold 92
“A young cognac that offrs layers of complexity with caramel, charred oak and a long finish.” - Michael Cervin
 
Familia Camarena Tequila
Silver Mexico $17.00 Platinum 96
“Spot on blanco purity is on full display here, with no hints of sugar. Refined rusticity - if you like you Margarita on the dry side, start here.” - Rich Cook
“This nails blanco-agave on the noce, great spiciness, light burn and minerality, this is what blanco is all about” - Michael Cervin
Reposado Mexico $19.00 Platinum 94
“The lightest repo you'll find, it retains its rustic quality and minimizes the use of oak, all to a great advantage, making this a repo that drinks like a high end blanco.” - Michael Cervin
 
Finvara
The King's Gambit Irish Whiskey Triple Distilled Ireland $39.99 Gold 91
“On the sweeter side, this offers lovely caramel, butterscotch, resin and a traditional Irish rusticity.” - Michael Cervin
 
Garrison Brothers
Texas Straight Bourbon Whiskey Balmorhea 2024 Release USA $179.99 Gold 93
“This is a beast, but it's reined in just enough to be approachable without losing is wild edge. A long, slow burn is spicy and Saigon cinnamon laced.” - Rich Cook
Texas Straight Bourbon Whiskey, Small Batch 2023 Release USA $89.99 Gold 90
“There's a nice funk character here - just a touch - that adds interest, and the finish is long and warming with nice spice presence.” - Rich Cook
 
Griffo Distillery
Cold Brew Coffee Liqueur Batch No. 19 USA $32.00 Platinum 96
“This is a great coffee liqueur, one where the focus is on the good coffee - Seamlessly executed.” - Rich Cook
“Bold and compelling, the rich robust coffee melds perfectly with toffee and light oak notes.” - Michael Cervin
 
 
Scott Street Gin Batch No. 26 USA $32.00 Platinum 95
“This hits the mark exactly and tastes just like a London dry should be. Bright, expressive, loads of flavor and botanicals.” - Michael Cervin
Vodka Batch No. 11 USA $24.00 Gold 90
“There's good purity here, and not so much that there's no character. Nicely executed.” - Rich Cook
 
High Noon
Vodka Seltzer Watermelon USA $2.50 Gold 90
“Spot on watermelon aromas and flavors, light as it's intended to be. Nice!” - Rich Cook
“Fresh, vibrant nose, exuding summertime vibes, tastes exactly as it should.” - Michael Cervin
 
Lasso Whiskey
Small Batch Colorado Rye Whiskey Aged 8 Years, Batch 1 USA $79.99 Platinum 95
“Straight up Rye, unmasked and showing its glorious spice to great effect. Clean, bright, balanced and long.” - Rich Cook
“Excellent rye, which actually tastes like rye, the spiciness is potent and definitely announces itself. This is how rye should taste, bold, long finish.” - Michael Cervin
Small Batch Colorado Wheat Whiskey Aged 6 Years, Batch 1 USA $69.99 Platinum 94
“Great balance here, with a creamy entry, high rye spice, clean midpalate and long pleasantly warming finish.” - Rich Cook
“Beautifully balanced, it's hefty but holds the wood and caramel notes together with a light burn and lengthy finish.” - Michael Cervin
 
 
Roper Reserve Single Barrel Whiskey Cask Strength, Batch 1 USA $99.99 Gold 93
“Aggressive and powerful, this offers a lot of rye spice with a lot of sweetness.” - Michael Cervin
 
Pennsylvania Dutch
American Bourbon Cream Liqueur USA $16.99 Gold 91
“Creamy, cinnamon, coconut, this is simple, but simply delicious.” - Michael Cervin
 
Rey Coyote
Tequila Reposado Mexico $55.95 Platinum 95
“Reposado character in abundance, with the vanilla notes from the barrel tempering the heat and extending the finish while keeping the agave character intact. Nice!” - Rich Cook
“Spot on repo. It doesn't mask the agave by oak. Yes the vanilla notes are present, but so too is the earthy and spicy agave. A beautifully structured reposado.” - Michael Cervin
 
Ron Santa Teresa
1796 Solera Rum Venezuela $40.00 Platinum 96
“A sublime Rum - very complex, with proper heat, and the rich wood tones don't overtake the bright rum character. A staondout in the category.” - Rich Cook
 
Royal Mash
Royal Mash British Vodka Great Britain $50.00 Platinum 94
“This hits all the classic vodka markers and has great finish push - don't over chill this - you'll miss the fun!” - Rich Cook
 
Sorel
Artisanal Liqueur USA $40.00 Platinum 94
“A unique liqueur with fabulous cocktail possibilities - cinnamon and hibiscus tea are sweetened just right.” - Rich Cook
 
Tierra de Ensueno
Tequila Blanco Artesanal Batch 1, Harvested 6/23 Mexico $64.99 Gold 93
“A faint dash of sweetness cuts the burn here in a pleasing way - a sipper for those who prefer blanco's softer side.” - Rich Cook
 
Uncle Nearest
1884 Small Batch Whiskey V. Eady Butler USA $49.00 Gold 92
“Clean and bright, with nice rye content adding spice and depth. Balanced from start to finish with a lithe texture.” - Rich Cook
“A smooth entry offering harmonious caramel and resin notes, light floral notes, and a judicious use of oak.” - Michael Cervin
1856 Premium Whiskey USA $59.00 Gold 92
“Nice and bright, with rich spice, soft corn and a pleasant finish burn.” - Rich Cook
“With more caramel on the nose this presents as sweeter, but still holds the alcohol down. Wood notes work well together.” - Michael Cervin

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