The New York International Spirits Competition is founded by Adam Levy aka the “Alcohol Professor”.
This is the first major international spirits competition with trade-only judges from top to bottom that consist of people who are buyers from the top retail stores, restaurant and bar owners, distributors and importers. Unlike other competitions, these judges have purchasing power and the ability to make a direct impact on brand sales.
The second major difference in this competition is that each submission will be not only placed in its product category but also its pricing category. Therefore a spirit will be judged in its category along with other spirits in its same price range by its retail price. Each category will have its own pricing levels and are listed on the submission form. So for example a Whiskey that retails for $50 will be judged with other Whiskeys in that price range and not with Whiskies that retails for $100. The judges will then know if they are judging a $54 bottle vs a $68 bottle of Irish Whiskey.
The NYISC is open to all commercially available spirits. Spirits new to New York and to the United States are strongly encouraged to submit. On average over 15% of those who submit are new to the US and or looking to enter the US Market.
At the start of each segment of the judging program, all the judges will be presented with an overview of the category along with the nuances particular to each subset. They will be informed on what price range they will be judging. The judges this year will also be given the retail price of each spirit they are judging. . As buyers they consistently make purchasing decisions not only on the spirit itself but by its price.
Brands will be rated on a set of criteria including appearance, aroma, taste, mouthfeel and finish. Upon completion of the tastings, panelists will confer and decide which samples are award worthy.
Award levels are Double Gold, Gold, Silver, and Bronze. Double Gold award winners will be re-tasted by all panelists to establish which brands may be eligible to receive a ‘Best of Category’ endorsement in its pricing category.
Adam Levy is also known as the Alcohol Professor and a recognized liquor writer and judge. The Alcohol Professor has become a must read website about beer, wine and spirits by consumers and trade. Mr. Levy writes for other online and print media outlets and is a Contributing Editor for Bar Biz Magazine.
As founder of the New York International Beverage Competitions he operates the 6th Annual New York International Beer Competition held February 12, 2017 and 6th Annual New York International Wine Competition which takes place in May 17th-18th 2017. Through his company All Spirits Events he organizes private and consumer tasting events throughout the country. Mr. Levy has a BA from Rutgers University and an EMBA from Baruch College, and currently sits on the Baruch College’s International Business Curriculum Advisory Board. He resides in the New York area with his dog Garrett Oliver.