2021 International Whisky Competition

Highlights of 2021

The Competition took place from May 12-16th in the beautiful town of Estes Park, Colorado. A professional tasting panel made of whisky, spirit, beer, and wine experts blind tasted each whisky individually. We scored each whisky using a comprehensive 100-point scale system. This unique process makes the International Whisky Competition one of the most professional competitions of its kind and the most followed whisky competition in the world.

Understanding the Scoring System

Judges were blind tasting, judging and scoring each whisky individually for 8 minutes based on the following four main segments and eleven sub sections:

  • Sight: Color (0 points), Visual Appeal (5 points)
  • Nose: Intensity and Complexity (15 points), Distinctiveness of Aromas (10 points), Balance of Aromas (10 points)
  • Taste/Mouth Feel: Palate and Balance (10 points), Alcohol, Body and Complexity (10 points), Distinctiveness of Flavours (10 points), Balance Between Flavours (10 points)
  • Finish: Length and Finish (10 points), Quality of Finish (10 points)

2021 Whisky of the Year

Ardbeg Uigeadail (95.9 Points)

Master Distiller of the Year

Dr. Bill Lumsden

Winner of the Golden Barrel Trophy

Ardbeg Distillery

Dr. Bill Lumsden

(Director of Distilling, Whisky Creation & Whisky Stocks, Glenmorangie and Ardbeg)

Dr. Bill Lumsden becomes Master Distiller of the Year, and Ardbeg wins Whisky of the Year with the highest-scoring whisky of the International Whisky Competition®. The outstanding Ardbeg Uigeadail, which scored 95.9 Points, truly highlights Dr. Lumsden’s vast experience, consistency, and mastery in the art of distilling and creating remarkable whiskies.

TOP 15 Whiskies of 2021

1st Place: Ardbeg Uigeadail – 95.9 Pts (Islay, Scotland)
2nd Place: Glenmorangie Vintage 1997 – 95.1 Pts (Highland, Scotland)
3rd Place: Dewar’s Double Double 32 Year Old – 95 Pts (Scotland)
4th Place: Kavalan Artist Series: Paul Chiang Peated Malt Single Cask Strength Single Malt Whisky – 94.6 Pts (Taiwan)
5th Place: King Car 40th Anniversary Selected Wine Cask Matured Single Malt Whisky – 94 Pts (Taiwan)
6th Place: Black Bourbon Society’s Maker’s Mark Private Selection: Recipe 2. – 93.8 Pts (Kentucky, USA)
7th Place: Kavalan Solist Vinho Barrique Single Cask Strength Single Malt Whisky – 93.7 Pts (Taiwan)
8th Place: Dewar’s Double Double 21 Year Old – 93.6 Pts (Scotland)
9th Place: Ardbeg Traigh Bhan 19 Year Old (Batch 2) – 93.4 Pts (Islay, Scotland)
10th Place: Glenmorangie Signet – 93.1 Pts (Highland, Scotland)
11th Place: Kavalan Solist (Oloroso) Sherry Single Cask Strength Single Malt Whisky – 93 Pts (Taiwan)
12th Place: Kilchoman Machir Bay – 92.97 Pts (Islay, Scotland)
13th Place: Ardbeg An Oa – 92.87 Pts (Islay, Scotland)
14th Place: Aberlour A’Bundah – 92.73 Pts (Speyside, Scotland)
15th Place: Glenmorangie Quinta Ruban 14 Year Old – 92.67 Pts (Highland, Scotland)

Download The Entire List

2021 International Whisky Competition

Official Results: Awards, Scores and Winners

Format: PDF
Size: 2.9 MB