The high quality of Australian spirits has once again been recognised on the global stage, as we bring home a slew of awards from the American Distilling Institute’s Craft Spirits Awards.

Husk Distillery in northern NSW is especially proud after its Husk Pure Cane rum picked up a gold medal before being named best in class and Best International Rum.

Pure Cane is made from 100 per cent fresh cane juice cut and crushed on the same day at Husk Farm Distillery. Husk is one of the few distilleries in the world that produces spirits 100 per cent from ingredients grown on their farm, harvested, crushed, fermented, distilled, and bottled all in this one place. It is real ‘farm to bottle’ rum.

The team said: “We’ve never had a big white rum culture in Australia and Husk is looking to change that by showing consumers how fresh, vibrant, and full flavoured this style of rum can be. The fact that the Best International Rum award went to a white rum over aged rums demonstrates the potential of the category.”

Husk also collected bronze medals for its Spiced Bam Bam Rum, Ink Gin and the Ink Gin’s packaging.

Tasmanian distillery, Turner Stillhouse, took home four medals for all four spirits within its artisanal Three Cuts Gin range, with the Three Cuts Gin ‘Distillers Release’ awarded Best of Category for International Contemporary Gin, as well as a Double Gold Medal.

In addition, the Three Cuts Gin ‘Pinot Barrel Rested’ gin was awarded Silver with the ‘Chardonnay Barrel Rested’ and ‘Founders Release’ both awarded Bronze within the same category.

Founder and Distiller, Justin Turner, said: “Of the hundreds of entries from all over the world in the Contemporary Gin category, we are very proud to have come out on top.”

South Australian craft distillery 78 Degrees also performed well, taking home Best of Category – International Whiskey, for its 78º Australian Whiskey.

In awarding the major trophy, the judges commended the 78º Australian Whiskey as a “very graceful whiskey with a grassy, rich palate, decent structure and finish.”

The flagship 78º Classic Gin was awarded a gold medal, while the 78º Native Grain Whiskey and 78º Bitter Orange Aperitif both won silver medals. Bronze medals were received for 78 Degrees’ Sunset Gin, Apple Brandy, and the just-released Muscat Finish Whiskey.

Distillery Founder and Head Distiller Sacha La Forgia said: “This award is a testament to the focus we’ve been putting into our whiskey production in recent years.

“When we set out to create the Australian Whiskey, our drive was not to replicate but to innovate. I think we’ve achieved that and I hope this award puts Australian whiskey on a global stage, and gives it the recognition that it deserves.”

Western Australia is also celebrating after Republic of Fremantle’s Full Bodied Gin was awarded a Double Gold and Best of Category, while its Aromatic Gin took home a bronze medal, and Republic’s Signature Vodka a Double Gold – a significant result for the new distillery, with only three per cent of entrants earning themselves Double Gold status in the 2021 awards.

Republic of Fremantle’s Master Distiller Oliver Kitson said: “We spent years trialling, tasting, and working with our state-of-the-art Müller copper still before we settled on our Signature Vodka and Aromatic and Full Bodied Gins.

“Crafting our spirits has been a true labour of love. Not many distilleries do it, but we made the decision from the onset to create our own base spirit, and in doing so – we’ve been able to control the entire process. It’s unconventional, but we swear by it.”

The awards didn’t stop there, Four Pillars took home a gold medal plus Best of Category for its Navy Strength Gin, plus a double gold for its Rare Dry Gin and a bronze medal for its Olive Leaf Gin.

Manly Spirits Co, won a gold medal for its Australian Dry Gin and a bronze medal for its Lilly Pilly Pink Gin as well as a silver medal for brand identity.

And finally GR Andrews & Sons Fleurieu Distillery’s Albatross Whisky won Best of Category International Malt Whiskey, plus a silver medal and the distillery also collected a silver medal for its Englishman in New York whiskey.

Held in Louisville, Kentucky, the ADI Craft Spirits Awards is the world’s longest running and largest drinks competition dedicated to craft spirits, so a huge congratulations to all our Australian winners.

Andy Young

Andy joined Intermedia as Editor of The Shout in 2015, writing news on a daily basis and also writing features for National Liquor News. Now Managing Editor of both The Shout and Bars and Clubs.

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