National Honey Board announces winners of 1st Honey Spirits Competition

honeyboard.jpegBarr Hill Tom Cat Reserve by Caledonia Spirits in Hardwick, Vermont, and OYO Honey Vanilla Bean Vodka by Middle West Spirits in Columbus, Ohio, took home gold medals in the National Honey Board’s inaugural Honey Spirits Competition. The competition attracted more then 90 entries throughout North America, with more than 50 taking home silver and bronze medals.

The Honey Spirits Competition featured seven spirits style categories, including a category for spirits that used honey as the primary distillate. An expert panel of judges evaluated the submitted spirits on their appearance, nose, palate and the role honey played in the spirit. A design category also recognized the best honey or honey bee-related packaging graphics.

“Honey’s usage in distilled spirits continues to grow as distillers realize how versatile the ingredient is either as a flavor or as a primary distillate,” Catherine Barry, National Honey Board’s director of marketing says. “Our first Honey Spirits Competition was a big success and we were thrilled with the number of entries in styles ranging from vodka and gin to whiskey and specialty spirits.”

The winners of the 2018 Honey Spirits Competition:

Gold Winners
Gin Category
Barr Hill Tom Cat Reserve
Caledonia Spirits, Hardwick, Vermont

Barr Hill Tom Cat Reserve is first distilled and then aged in new American oak barrels. The new oak barrel character complements juniper for a captivating aroma. A touch of honey gives the spirit a remarkably approachable and enjoyable flavor.

Vodka Category
OYO Honey Vanilla Bean Vodka
– Middle West Spirits, Columbus, Ohio

OYO Honey Vanilla Bean Vodka starts with Middle West Spirits’s flagship unfiltered vodka, and then is infused with honey and vanilla beans.

Silver Winners
Gin Category
Barr Hill Gin– Caledonia Spirits, Hardwick, Vermont
StilltheOne COMB Gin – StilltheOne Distillery Two, Port Chester, New York

Vodka Category
Barr Hill Vodka – Caledonia Spirits, Hardwick, Vermont

Rum Category
Barrel Honey Rum – Dogfish Head Distilling Company, Milton, Delaware

Whiskey/Bourbon
Swarmbusting Honey Whiskey – Manatawny Still Works, Pottstown, Pennsylvania
Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Honey – Jack Daniel Distillery, Lynchburg, Tennessee

Liqueurs/Specialty Spirits Category
Howlin’ Hounds Honey Moonshine – Missouri Ridge Distillery, Branson, Missouri
Velnias – Dirty Water Distillery LLC, Plymouth, Massachusetts
KOVAL Chrysanthemum and Honey Liqueur – KOVAL Distillery, Chicago, Illinois
Mt. Defiance Sweet Vermouth – Mt. Defiance Cidery and Distillery, Middleburg, Virginia

Distilled from Honey Category
Domeloz Yellow Label – Domeloz, Madison, Wisconsin
Domeloz Black Locust – Domeloz, Madison, Wisconsin
Apple Mist Honey – White Winter Winery Inc., Iron River, Wisconsin
Little Owl – The Hardware Distillery Co., Hoodsport, Washington
HWY 101 – The Hardware Distillery Co., Hoodsport, Washington
Bee’s Knees Peach Keen – The Hardware Distillery Co., Hoodsport, Washington
Bee’s Knees Merry Cherry – The Hardware Distillery Co., Hoodsport, Washington
Cat’s Pajamas – The Hardware Distillery Co., Hoodsport, Washington
Mel Vocatus – Ethanology, Elk Rapids, Michigan
Barrel Research Honey Spirits – Up North Distillery, Post Falls, Idaho

Bronze Winners
Gin Category
Seersucker Southern Style Gin – Seersucker Southern Style Gin, Celina, Texas
Tamworth Garden Apiary Gin – Tamworth Distilling and Mercantile, Tamworth, New Hampshire
DSP.7 Honey Gin – Jersey Spirits Distilling Co., Fairfield, New Jersey
StilltheOne COMB Barrel Aged Gin – StilltheOne Distillery Two, Port Chester, New York

Vodka Category
Wishkah River Vodka Distilled from Honey – Wishkah River Distillery, Aberdeen, Washington
StilltheOne COMB Vodka – StilltheOne Distillery Two, Port Chester, New York
Spring44 Honey Vodka – Spring44 Distilling Inc., Loveland, Colorado
Hangar 1 Honeycomb Distillers Exclusive Vodka – Hangar 1 Distillery, Alameda, California

Whiskey/Bourbon Category
Ghost Coast Honey Flavored Whiskey – Ghost Coast Distillery, Savannah, Georgia

Liqueurs/Specialty Spirits Category
Honey Baijiu – Vinn Distillery, Wilsonville, Oregon
Belle Isle Honey Habanero Moonshine – Belle Isle Craft Spirits, Richmond, Virginia
KAS Krupnikas Traditional – KAS Spirits, Mahopac, New York
Halo Honey Shots – Painted Stave, Smyrna, Delaware
Amaro Cinpatrazzo – Beppe and the Architect LLC, River Forest, Illinois

Distilled from Honey Category
Hive O’Clock Somewhere– Nelson’s Green Crier Distillery, Nashville, Tennessee
Honey Spirits – Up North Distillery, Post Falls, Idaho
Dawn Fire Honey and Strawberry – White Winter Winery Inc., Iron River, Wisconsin
Mistic Fire Honey and Raspberry – White Winter Winery Inc., Iron River, Wisconsin
Honey Schnapps – Cardinal Spirits, Bloomington, Indiana
Bee’s Knees Raspberry – The Hardware Distillery Co., Hoodsport, Washington
Barrel Finished Honey Spirits – Up North Distillery, Post Falls, Idaho
Honey Schnapps – Backwards Distilling Company, Mills, Wyoming
Radically Redirected Jersey Nectar – Jersey Spirits Distilling Co., Fairfield, Wisconsin
Barrel Research Honey Spirits – Up North Distillery, Post Falls, Idaho
Domeloz Buckwehat Honey – Domeloz, Madison, Wisconsin
Domeloz Tupelo – Domeloz, Madison, Wisconsin
Domeloz Black Label – Domeloz, Madison, Wisconsin
Domeloz Rested on a Bourbon Barrel – Domeloz, Madison, Wisconsin
Domeloz White Clover – Domeloz, Madison, Wisconsin

Design/Packaging Winners
Gold — Tamworth Garden Apiary Gin – Tamworth Distilling and Mercantile, Tamworth, New Hampshire
Silver — KOVAL Chrysanthemum and Honey Liqueur – KOVAL Distillery, Chicago, Illinois
Bronze — Nashville Honey Spiced Honey Liqueur – Nashville Craft Distillery, Nashville, Tennessee

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