ULTIMATE SPIRITS CHALLENGE® Announces 2017 Results for Top Gin, Rum, Tequila, Whiskey, Vodka and more Spirits Also Assessed in USC's Innovative Cocktail Evaluation

HAWTHORNE, N.Y., March 29, 2017 /CNW/ -- Ultimate Spirits Challenge®, the world's trailblazing spirits competition, announces the winners and full results for the 2017 Challenge. Ultimate Spirits Challenge (USC), now in its seventh year, celebrates 43 Chairman's Trophy winners, USC's highest award of excellence, and 213 Finalists. Ultimate Spirits Challenge 2017 was held at the Ultimate Beverage Challenge Evaluation Center in Hawthorne, NY.  

Says USC judging chairman F. Paul Pacult, "One of the many advantages of having our own year-round facility is that instead of having to judge hundreds of spirits entries over a couple of days like other spirits competitions, we can take the time to break each category down into small flights. This means that USC judging panels focus on each flight with greater in-depth attention, resulting in more accurate assessments. We don't take shortcuts which is perhaps why USC experienced a 20% increase in entries this year."

USC also provides an additional component of cocktail evaluations. The judges taste and assess a spirit's "mixability factor" in classic cocktail recipes (for suitable spirits categories). This innovation, employed by no other competition, allows deeper evaluation of spirits.

Recommendations for cocktails, along with the complete results, can be found on www.ultimate-beverage.com.

USC 2017 – CHAIRMAN'S TROPHY WINNERS

APERITIF
Alessio Vino Chinato

BAIJIU
Yushan Cellaring 6 Years Old Kaoliang

BRANDY
American: Bartlett Spirits of Maine Pear Eau-de-Vie
Armagnac: Dartigalongue Grande Eau-de-Vie 25 Years Old Bas Armagnac
Calvados: Roger Groult XO Pays d'Auge
Cognac: Pierre Ferrand Reserve Double Cask
French Brandy: Monteru Double Wood Triple Toast Finish
Grappa: Poli Sarpa di Poli
Pisco: Porton Acholado
Spanish Brandy: Cardenal Mendoza Solera Gran Reserva Brandy de Jerez

CACHAÇA
Novo Fogo Tanager

GIN
London Dry: Tanqueray
World: Ferdinand's Saar Dry Gin

LIQUEUR
Grand Marnier Cuvée du Centenaire

MEZCAL
Rey Campero Tepextate Joven

RUM
Rum: Appleton Estate 21 Years Old
Rhum Agricole: Clément VSOP
Spiced Rum: Don Q Oak Barrel

TEQUILA, 100% AGAVE
Blanco: Tequila Cabeza
Reposado: Partida
Añejo: Blue Nectar Founder's Blend
Extra Añejo: El Tesoro Paradiso

WHISKY – CANADA
Lot 40 Canadian Rye

WHISKEY – IRELAND
Blended: Jameson 18 Years Old
Single Pot Still: Yellow Spot 12 Years Old
Single Malt: The Irishman Small Batch

WHISKY – JAPAN
Nikka Miyagikyo Single Malt

WHISKY – SCOTLAND
Blended: Buchanan's Master
Blended Malt: Usquaebach An Ard Ri Cask Strength 2016
Single Malt-Highland: Glengoyne 15 Years Old
Single Malt-Island: Highland Park Valkyrie
Single Malt-Islay: Laphroaig 10 Years Old
Single Malt-Speyside: BenRiach 20 Years Old

WHISKEY – USA
American: Wild Turkey Forgiven
Kentucky Straight Bourbon: Col. E.H. Taylor Small Batch
Rye: Hudson Manhattan Rye
Single Malt: McCarthy's Oregon 3 Years Old

WHISKEY – WORLD
Paul John Peated Select Cask Indian Single Malt

WHISKEY – WORLD – FLAVORED
Catskill Provisions New York Honey

SHOCHU
iichiko BLŪ

VERMOUTH
Alessio Vermouth Chinato

VODKA
Flavored: Van Gogh Dutch Caramel
Unflavored: Purity

For complete results: www.ultimate-beverage.com 

All products are rated on the 100-point scale by the spirits industry's most renowned judges including buyers, journalists, educators and bar owners. Judges included: Founder/Judging Chairman F. Paul Pacult, Jacques Bezuidenhout, Tad Carducci, Doug Frost, Jason Hedges, Tyler Hudgens, Paul Maloney, Don Lee, Jennifer Simonetti-Bryan, Joaquin Simo, Tim Cooper, Paul Tanguay and Jillian Vose.

All spirits rated 80 points and higher receive an individual results page (accessed by clicking on "more…" next to the product name) which provides all downloadable marketing artwork. Spirits rated 85 points and higher receive a tasting note. If a spirit is recommended for its category's assigned cocktail, it is indicated on this page.

USC results are promoted globally. In addition, high scoring products are featured in the Ultimate Beverage Challenge Guide published each year in the October issue of Beverage Media reaching more than 75,000 on- and off-premise spirits buyers.

ULTIMATE SPIRITS CHALLENGE…No shortcuts. Just honest, impartial judging.

ABOUT ULTIMATE BEVERAGE CHALLENGE
Ultimate Beverage Challenge (UBC) provides expert evaluation of wines and spirits for producers, importers and marketers through its two innovative annual competitions: Ultimate Spirits Challenge and Ultimate Wine Challenge. UBC partners are F. Paul Pacult, Sue Woodley and David Talbot. Photos and more are at ultimate-beverage.com.

SOURCE Ultimate Spirits Challenge

For further information: Savona Communications, Manuela Savona, manuela@savonacomminications.com, Ashley Sheen, ashley@savonacommunications.com, 917.969.1275, http://www.ultimate-beverage.com

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