New Orleans Spirits Competition

Posted on: May. 15, 2023 | | By: Daniela Jagemann

The New Orleans Spirits Competition, an international spirits competition bringing wider recognition to fine spirits from top-flight producers across the globe, is presented in partnership with TOTCF, with nearly three dozen prominent members of the spirits community serving as judges to determine a suite of awards categories.

A preliminary judging round will be held before Tales of the Cocktail. Spirits professionals and industry experts will be seated in panels of four to make the initial assessment. Flights of similar spirits will be served blind to each panel to evaluate based on a strict set of criteria including, aromas, flavor, mouthfeel, and finish. Panels will make tasting notes and discuss scores to arrive at a consensus.

The top-scoring spirits in each class of spirit will advance to a championship round. This first-of-its-kind public judging will blind tasting will be conducted publicly during Tales of the Cocktail, with an audience of industry professionals participating in an educational tasting along with the judges.

TOTC2023 Week Pass, TOTC2023 Day Pass (Monday), and TOTC2023 Tasting Room Day Pass (Monday) attendees will have first-come-first-served access to the LIVE final judging.

The audience at the finals of the New Orleans Spirits Competition will have the same set of sample spirits before them as each judge. The panels of four prominent judges — including spirits luminaries Dale DeGroff and Jeff “Beachbum” Berry —  will sip, rank, and discuss in an open process to determine the spirit of the year in four classes: Agave, Gin, Rum, and Whiskey.

This second round will determine ten “best-in-class” spirits announced in an award ceremony held during the Meet the Distillers event. 

TOTC2023 Meet the Distillers attendees are invited to attend the awards ceremony at Friday’s Meet the Distillers and toast the winners of this year’s Best Of prizes.

*Domestic spirits entries are being accepted through May 19. To learn more, visit the NOSC website. 

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