First ever Scottish Gin Awards to be presented by BBC TV Scotland’s Catriona Shearer and radio broadcaster and comedian Des Clarke
The organisers behind what looks set to be the largest ever celebration of Scottish gin have revealed an event line-up combining tasting, celebrity hosts and musical entertainment.
They have announced that the formal event on 14 September will start with drinks from the Scottish Gin Bar – to be managed by drinks industry expert Solid Liquids and supported by Bon Accord, Fentimans, Fever Tree, Franklin & Sons and Walter Gregor’s tonic producers – which will serve all eight Scottish gin finalists in the Scottish Gin Distillery of the Year category.
The awards will be presented by BBC TV Scotland news anchor Catriona Shearer and radio broadcaster and award winning comedian Des Clarke, who will guide guests through the seven business and 11 taste categories – culminating in the top award of the night, Scottish Distillery of the Year.
Stephen White, Chair of the judging panel and Founder of the Scottish Gin Society, which sponsors the awards, said: “The Scottish Gin Society is the go-to place to find out everything that is happening in the world of Scottish gin. It is fitting that we are the inaugural sponsors of the Scottish Gin Awards programme as this will undoubtedly be the biggest night of the year for the business of gin in Scotland.
“We are delighted to be working with producers and distillers who are committed to making the gin industry one of Scotland’s most exciting sectors in the drinks market. Winning an inaugural Scottish Gin Award will be a tremendous honour to any of these businesses and will help them gain positive sales advantage in an increasingly popular category.”
Gold, Silver and Bronze medals will be presented across categories which include Gin Liqueur, London Dry Gin, Navy Strength and Cask Aged in a wide-ranging programme which will also feature a gin-inspired gourmet dinner menu.
Glasgow musical group Admiral Fallow will perform a number of sets on the evening and will also perform with award-winning Scottish soprano Shuna Scott Sendall to deliver highlights from The Distilling Project, a new opera being launched by the charity NOISE (New Opera In Scotland Events).
The Scottish Gin Awards was launched as a new competition in January 2017 by PR and events company KDMedia to support and promote the Scottish gin scene. The competition was thrown open to any producer headquartered and carrying out production in Scotland.
Thirty-one Scottish gin producers entered the awards, with 61 business entries received across categories including innovation, branding and gin destination. A judging panel of 12 gin experts tasted 56 Scottish gins under strict competition conditions – supervised by international sensory management consultancy Cara Technology.
Only producers which distil entirely in Scotland were eligible to enter the top award, Scottish Gin Distillery of the Year.
According to the Scottish Gin Awards, whose celebration dinner takes place on Thursday, 14 September 2017, Scotland now produces more than 70% of the gin consumed in the UK and, in a recent study by Mintel, it was predicted that UK gin sales will top £1.3bn by 2020.
More than 450 guests have already booked to attend the celebration, with the event on-track to be a sell-out success as industry figures from the Scottish gin industry prepare to hit the red carpet.