Best Scotch In Asia? San Francisco World Spirits Competition Launches In Singapore

Food & Drink

On June 5th and 6th, for the first time ever, the company behind the famed San Francisco World Spirits Competition launched its first Asia-based branch, the Singapore World Spirits Competition. The owning company, Tasting Alliance, held a very successful two-day competition in Singapore, supported by their team, local help, and Asia-based judges, mostly introduced by the judges from their US competitions. The event marked a bright future for the growing brand in Asia’s spirits and drinks scene.

Photo: Getty

Getty

As with the other arms of the competition, that take place in New York and San Francisco, the Tasting Alliance invited twelve established figures in Asia’s drinks industry to Singapore to judge the spirits entered. While the competition is still much smaller than the U.S. editions, hundreds of spirits were sent to be judged, clearly showing the company’s reach globally. Held at The ExciseMan whisky bar, one of Singapore’s newest bars, the judging took place over two days. The main highlight was China’s mysterious Baijiu, which made a strong appearance with over 90 entries. The Singapore World Spirits Competition already took the title of the second largest Baijiu judging competition outside of China. With a baijiu expert in attendance, panels included many varieties from the different baijiu categories, which are broken down by their aroma. Most entries fell under the ‘strong aroma’ baijiu category, which accounts for almost 70 per cent of China’s baijiu production. Following were the more powerful ‘soy aroma’ expressions and some ‘rice aroma’ baijiu.

Jiahu Zhongyuanweidao, a mixed aroma baijiu, reigned supreme and was awarded the ‘Best Baijiu’ title. Tanqueray No. Ten Gin was named the ‘Best in Show White Spirit’, winning over the vodka, spiced vodka, baijiu, and white rum categories. In whiskey, many great bourbons, Asian, and Scotch whiskies were sampled but the ‘Best in Show Whisk(e)y’ winner was quite a surprise – The affordable, NAS Wolfburn Langskip Scotch comes in at 58% and can be found for 80USD in most stores. The expression was chosen amongst the judges as the best whisky of the whole competition, beating out much older, more expensive releases. Paul John Select Cask was named the best Asian whisky and the single barrel bourbon by Garrison Brothers topped the bourbon category.

Here are the top award winners:

Best In Show

Wolfburn Langskip Single Malt Scotch – Best in Show Whisk(e)y & Best in Show Scotch

Tanqueray No. Ten Gin – Best in Show White Spirits & Best Gin

Best In Category

Garrison Brothers Single Barrel Texas Straight Bourbon – Best Bourbon

Paul John Classic Select Cask Indian Single Malt – Best Asian Whisky & Best Single Malt

Fundador Supremo Brandy Aged 15 Years in Old Amontillado Sherry Casks – Best Brandy

Samai Premium Gold Rum – Best Rum, Best Southeast Asian Rum

BOLD Vodka – Best Vodka

Carvia Spiced Vodka – Best Flavored Vodka

Jiahu Zhongyuanweidao – Best Baijiu, Best Mixed Aroma Baijiu

Chengliji – Best Light Aroma Baijiu

Renhua Guizhou Hengfu Tiancidituo Jiancangban – Best Sauce Aroma

Yifuchun Mianrou – Best Strong Aroma Baijiu

Jaan Paan Liqueur – Best Liqueur

CUCIELO Bianco Vermouth di Torino – Best Apéritif & Best Vermouth


As more spirits brands from the U.S. and Europe try to enter different Asian markets, the Singapore World Spirits Competition is expected to grow quickly in the coming years. For this reason, the judges must remain unbiased and focused in order to deliver the very best to Asia’s booming drinks scene.

The competition organizers, Singaporean team, and judges were all overjoyed to be the pioneers of the new Singapore World Spirits competition, and judging by the success of the San Francisco sister competition, the competition is expected to grow and flourish in Asia’s vibrant mixology and distilled spirits scene.

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