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South Africa's Three Ships Whisky snatched up seven awards at the international San Francisco World Spirits Competition (SFWSC) 2021; among the seven was the sought-after 'Best in Show' award for the brand's Three Ships Whisky 5 Year Old.
This blend of malt and grain whiskies with its full peaty character and smooth finish was named Best Other Whisky and earned a Double Gold medal.
Seven is now the record number of awards won by a South African whisky at the SFWSC.
In addition, Three Ships Whisky scooped two Double Golds for the Three Ships Whisky 10 Year Old Single Malt and Three Ships Whisky 11 Year Old Single Malt Shiraz Cask Finish – part of Master Distiller Andy Watt’s annual limited-edition Master’s Collection.
A Gold was awarded for the Three Ships Whisky 9 Year Old Fino Cask Finish – also a limited edition Master’s Collection release; a Silver for its Three Ships Whisky 12 Year Old Single Malt Whisky; and a Bronze medal for the Three Ships Select Whisky.
The SFWSC is acknowledged as one of the world’s most prestigious spirits competitions, and the second oldest in the world, after the International Wines and Spirits Competition.
Noted for the quality of its world-class judges, each year’s results are closely followed, both by consumers eager for the expert judgements and more importantly by the trade, especially the distributor community.
SA whisky in the spotlight
Three Ships Whisky production is done at the James Sedgwick Distillery in Wellington outside of Cape Town, the continent’s only commercial whisky distillery, where master distiller Andy Watts has produced the globally awarded South African Three Ships Whisky and Bain’s Cape Mountain Whisky ranges for the past 37 years.
Three Ships Whisky master distiller Andy Watts
Watts was recently inducted into Whisky Magazine’s Whisky Hall of Fame for his life-long commitment to the South African whisky industry.
"These awards are very important to us because they place South African whisky firmly in the spotlight – not only as a contender but a winner of global awards – competing among the best in the world," says Watts. "Over the years it’s been our mission to change the way local whisky is perceived, and I believe this is happening now."
"The fact that a South African whisky secured a lion's share of medals in this category of the SFWSC is a grand acknowledgment that our own country’s contribution to international whisky-making is something to be proud of. Our own whiskies are now recognised and awarded as among the best, globally," Watts concludes.
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