Home Industry News Releases 2022 Sunset International Spirits Competition Winners Announced

2022 Sunset International Spirits Competition Winners Announced


Best of Show Awarded to Jettywave Distillery California Botanical Gin

November 21, 2022 (Santa Rosa, Calif.) — Winners have been announced for the 2022 Sunset International Spirits Competition, which took place in Santa Rosa, Calif., November 8. Taking the top spot this year is Jettywave Distillery’s California Botanical Gin, which judges described as “Delicious sipping,” “peppercorn,” “a stunner,” and “delightful winter gin.” At the end of the competition, Jettywave took a double gold medal as well as Best of the Best honors.

A Northern California-based enterprise, Jettywave (www.jettywave.com) was founded with a dedication to natural ingredients and a love of the great outdoors (especially the ocean). According to co-founder David Westendorf, “We bring a left coast vigor to this staid British spirit, imbuing our love of bold recipes that inspired our ‘unexpected flavors’ vision from the Jettywave beginning. Distilled from organic American corn. Hugged by California botanicals. Juniper berry mash is complemented by local pistachios to add a creamy structure to the viscosity. An herbal wave of thyme, coriander seed, cardamom, ginger root, black pepper, Meyer lemon, shiso and our garden’s own nasturtium complete this complex new world gin.”

“Cardamon and juniper layer heavily upon the initial interaction while citrus pushes through towards the end but settles gently. The botanical recipe includes juniper, black pepper, cardamon, coriander, pistachio, ginger, thyme Meyer lemon peels, shiso leaves, and nasturtium blossoms from our Jettywave Garden.”

The 4th Annual Sunset International Spirits Competition is judged by fellow distillers; qualified members of the media; spirits and distilling educators and researchers; and retail buyers. This mix of experts gives the results professional weight and increases marketing opportunities for medal winners. 

“Whether mixed into a craft cocktail or served neat, fine spirits are an integral part of the modern Western lifestyle we celebrate at Sunset,” says Editor-in-Chief Hugh Garvey. “We’re honored to yet again share the accomplishments of the top distillers and brands with our readers.”

A full list of gold medal winners and above can be found here: 2022 Sunset International Spirits Competition Winners.  Winning producers will also be featured in a Spring release of a Spirits Special non-print, digital edition with supporting microsite. 

Competition producer Debra Del Fiorentino also thanks competition sponsor, Neat glassware (www.theneatglass.com). For more information, visit Sunset Competitions at: https://sunsetcompetitions.com/sunset-international-spirits-competition/

2022 Sunset International Spirits Competition Best of Class Winners:

Best of the Best

Jettywave Distillery California Botanical Gin (GG, 99 pts.)

Best Asian Spirits

Golden Beaver Distillery BIba Soju (G, 91)

Best Brandy

Calisco Spirits, Spirit of California American Grape Brandy (GG, 95)

Best Cachasa 

Cachaça Bela OURO (G, 92)

Best Cognac

Sire Spirits, Branson Cognac, VSOP Grand Champagne (GG, 97)

Best Flavored/Infused Gin

Wild Roots Spirits Orange & Bergamot Gin (GG, 98)

Best Liqueur

Absinthia Organic Absinthe Superieure Verte (GG, 97) 

Best Mezcal

Cutwater Spirits Mezcal Anejo (GG, 95)

Best Tequila

Don Londres Blanco (GG, 97) 

Best Flavored/Infused Tequila

Rancho La Gloria Jalapeno Lime Infused Tequila (GG, 97)

Best Ready to Drink (RTD) 

Cutwater Spirits Tropical Tiki Rum Mai Tai (GG, 96)

Best Rum

Hawaii Sea Spirits Kula Dark Run (GG, 95)

Best Vodka

Spirit Works Distillery Vodka (GG, 98)

Best of Whiskey

Waterford Whisky Rathclogh: Edition 1.1 Single Malt Irish Whiskey (GG, 99)

Best Japanese Whiskey

Yoshino Spirits Kamiki Sakura Wood Whisky (G, 94)

Best Other White Spirits

Axia Spirit (G, 94)

Best Specialty

Intrepid Spirits Mad March Hare Irish Poiti­n (GG, 95)

Best Woman Owner/Distiller

Absinthia Vermut / Absinthia’s Bottle Spirits

Best Non-Alcoholic Mixer

Absinthia Cocktail Syrups Caged Heat (G, 92)



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