The World Whiskies Awards, a whisky competition to select the best whisky in each category from among whisky entries from around the world, has announced the results of the preliminary rounds for each country for 2022.
In this article, I will introduce the results of the first round in Japan, organized by category.
Many whiskeys released by craft distilleries (small distilleries) such as Akkeshi, Kanosuke, Tsunuki, Komagatake, Asaka, and Saburomaru won awards.
The prize-winning products from the preliminary rounds will now advance to the World Round, where the final results will be announced on March 24.
- 1. What is the World Whisky Awards?
- 2. Judging process
- 3. Results of the first round in Japan
- 3-1. Blended
- [Category Winner] Akkeshi blended whisky Shosho
- [Gold] Nikka From the Barrel
- [Silver] Akkeshi Blended Whisky Usui
- [Silver] Nikka Days
- [Silver] Shinobu Blended Whisky Mizunara Wood Finish
- [Silver] Kyoto Whisky Nishijin Textile Black Belt
- [Bronze] Shin Select Reserve
- [Bronze] The Shiki Blended Whisky Number 5
- [Bronze] The Shiki Blended Whisky Number 6
- [Bronze] The Shiki Blended Whisky Number 7
- 3-2. Blended Limited Release
- 3-3. Blended Malt No Age Statement
- 3-4. Blended Malt 12 Years & Under
- 3-5 .New Make & Young Spirit
- 3-6. Single Cask Single Malt
- 3-7.Single Cask Single Malt 12 Years & Under
- 3-8.Single Malt Single Malt
- [Category Winner] Kanosuke Single Malt Limited distillery
- [Gold] Kanosuke Single Malt 2021 Second Edition
- [Silver] Kanosuke Single Malt 2021 First Edition
- [Silver] Yamazakura Asaka The First Peated
- [Silver] Nikka Single Malt Yoichi Non-peated
- [Silver] Mars Tsunuki 2022 Edition
- [Bronze] Akkeshi Blended Whisky SARORUNKAMUY Overseas Edition
- [Bronze] Nikka Single Malt Miyagikyo
- [Bronze] Mars Tsunuki 2021 Minami-Satsuma Edition
- [Bronze Bronze] Ichiro’s Malt Chichibu The Peated 2022
- 3-9. Small Batch Single Malt
- 3-10. Small Batch Single Malt 12 Years & Under
- 3-1. Blended
- 4. Consideration
1. What is the World Whisky Awards?
The World Whisky Awards is a global award that recognizes the best of all styles of internationally recognized whisky. Sponsored by TheDrinksReport.com, the world’s #1 online resource for liquor professionals, the World Whisky Awards selects, honors and promotes the world’s best whiskies to consumers and industry professionals around the world.
2. Judging process
The judging process is divided into two genres: Taste and Design. Here, I will explain the Taste judging.
2-1. Round 1
Each whisky is tasted in its own style to identify and select the style winner. The judging panel for the World Whisky Awards includes international journalists, liquor retailers and industry experts. The first round of judging seems to be done by each of the exhibiting countries.
2-2. Round 2
The whiskeys that won the style awards are tasted against each other to determine the “best” whiskey in each category.
2-3. Round 3
The “Best” whiskies in each category are tasted one last time to determine the “World’s Best” whisky. In addition to the judges from the first and second rounds, the judges at this stage will include leading distillery managers and whisky industry experts.
3. Results of the first round in Japan
Now, let’s take a look at the results of the first round of whisky from Japan, category by category. The original information of this list is here.
For the sake of volume, only the product names of the Blonze award-winning whiskies will be introduced.
Blended whisky is a whisky made by vatting at least one type of single malt whisky and one type of single grain whisky. If a blended malt has a geographical indication (e.g. Irish blended malt), the blend must have been vatted and bottled in the country listed on the label. Additionally, the majority (50% or more) of the component whiskeys must have been distilled and matured in the country listed on the label to be eligible for entry.
[Category Winner] Akkeshi blended whisky Shosho
[Gold] Nikka From the Barrel
[Silver] Akkeshi Blended Whisky Usui
[Silver] Nikka Days
[Silver] Shinobu Blended Whisky Mizunara Wood Finish
[Bronze] Shin Select Reserve
[Bronze] The Shiki Blended Whisky Number 5
[Bronze] The Shiki Blended Whisky Number 6
[Bronze] The Shiki Blended Whisky Number 7
3-2. Blended Limited Release
A blended whisky release with a limited production of 3,600 bottles or less.
[Category Winner] Ichiro’s Malt & Grain Limited Edition 2022
The photo shows the version for 2021, so the product that won this award is supposed to be released in 2022.
[Silver] Single Blended Whisky Fuji Limited 2022
What does it mean that Kirin’s “Single Grain Fuji” calls itself “Single Blended” ? I think it means that it is a blend of malt and grain from a single distillery (Fuji Gotemba Distillery).
The photo shows the current “Single Grain Fuji” for reference.
3-3. Blended Malt No Age Statement
Blended malt whiskey is made by combining single malt whiskeys distilled at different distilleries, and is sometimes referred to as “vatted malt” or “pure malt” on the package. If a blended malt has a geographical indication (e.g. Irish blended malt), the blend must have been vatted and bottled in the country indicated on the label. Additionally, the majority (50% or more) of the component whiskeys must have been distilled and matured in the country listed on the label to be eligible for entry.
[Category Winner] Yamazakura Blended Malt Asaka
[Silver] Nikka Taketsuru Pure Malt