Skeptic Distillery Scores a Clean Sweep with its Gin and Vodka in USA Spirits Ratings Competition

To receive this award, Skeptic Distillery’s Gin and Vodka needed to score highly in 3 different categories - Quality, Value and Packaging - in a blind tasting competition overseen by a panel of high-profile judges.In contrast to other international spirits competitions, which typically evaluate a spirit only based on overall taste or quality, the inaugural USA Spirits Ratings competition considered all three of these individual factors. Quality refers to the overall taste, flavor and aroma of the spirit. Value refers to the relative pricing of the spirit vis-a-vis other peers. And Packaging refers to the overall brand presentation of the spirit, with an emphasis on how well the spirit appeals to a specific customer segment. The goal of the USA Spirits Ratings competition is to find, evaluate and award spirits that successfully score well across each of these three major scoring criteria.

The judging panel consisted of spirits industry experts with extensive commercial buying expertise. Spirits were evaluated across three different criteria (Quality, Value and Packaging) and assigned scores on a 100-point basis. Quality was scored out of 50 points, Value out of 25 points, and Packaging out of 25 points. In order to receive a [Gold/Silver/Bronze] medal in competition, a spirit needed to score at least [90/80/70] points as part of a total weighted score.

Skeptic Distillery scored the highest marks in the gin category overall with its Skeptic Gin, earning a trifecta of awards, including a gold medal for an overall combined score of 92, Gin of the Year for 2018, and perhaps the most prestigious accolade of all; Best in Show for all spirit entries in all categories from the USA. Skeptic Gin is an exceptionally smooth, intensely flavorful yet balanced, citrusy and aromatic gin that the judges were very impressed with.

Not to be outdone by its gin sister product, Skeptic Vodka also scored the highest marks in the vodka category overall and took home the prestigious honor of Vodka of the Year for 2018. The judges complimented Skeptic Vodka on its premium smoothness, and the ability to sip it neat or on the rocks. According to USA Spirits Ratings, “The mixer-friendly Skeptic Vodka’s subtle flavors and fragrances, unmatched smoothness and purity have already made many fans” among the judges.

According to Sid Patel, CEO and Founder of event organizers Beverage Trade Network (BTN), “This innovative scoring system has been instrumental in identifying world-class spirits that consumers actually want to drink. We’ve broadened the definition of drinkability, to reflect how spirits drinkers actually choose which spirits they buy at a retail store or order from a restaurant menu.”

“We’re really excited that both of our entries performed so well across all categories at the USA Spirits Ratings event,” said Nick Fourkas of Skeptic Distillery. Karl Loepke added, “We put a lot of emphasis on crafting spirits that are unique but maintain broad consumer appeal, and that drinkers will enjoy in a variety of occasions and drinking presentations. These awards really represent a validation of our unique approach to making spirits.”

The judging panel included spirits industry professionals with commercial buying expertise. Judges included professionals from leading retail chains, wholesalers, distributors, specialty retailers and casual and fine dining establishments. The inclusion of so many high-profile judges ensured that spirits awarded medals in competition were those with a high degree of commercial appeal.

About Skeptic Distillery Co.

Skeptic Distillery ( is creating a stir in the spirits industry and in the mixology and craft cocktail culture. In fact, they’ve completely changed the way that spirits are produced. Their process results in new, exciting products of superior smoothness and taste. Skeptic is one of only a handful of distilleries in the world producing spirits using cold vacuum distillation technology, and quite certainly the only one doing it in the utterly unique way that they do.

About USA Spirits Ratings

The USA Spirits Ratings is the only event of its kind in the United States. The event, which took place for the first time in July 2018 in San Francisco, seeks to identify world-class spirits that consumers actually want to drink. The organizers of the event are Beverage Trade Network, which hosts events for the spirits industry around the world, including the London Spirits Competition in London and the USA Trade Tasting in New York.