Before we share some very exciting news with you, we hope you, your family and friends are well, healthy and safe.
We interrupt your lockdown to bring you a very special announcement:
We have won the global title of Single Outlet Retailer of the Year in the Icons of Whisky 2020!
Every year the global publication, Whisky Magazine, holds an international awards competition that recognises the best the whisky industry has to offer. In addition to their highly anticipated World Whiskies Awards, which sees whiskies competing in various categories, their Icons of Whisky awards recognise whisky people, establishments and producers.
You may remember our news in mid-February when we shared that we had won Single Outlet Retailer of the Year for our region. Since the Icons are firstly presented regionally; in America, Australia, China, Ireland, Scotland and Rest of World (which includes South Africa), those successful within their region then compete for the global title. Winners are announced at an awards ceremony in London, which was meant to be last week (26-March) but with the current global Coronavirus pandemic, was postponed until later in the year. Not wanting to wait, the organisers took to social media to announce the global winners, and lo and behold, your friendly, South African, neighbourhood, whisky shop won!
This means, according to the fine international panel of judges, our little whisky shop in Joburg, is the best (single outlet) whisky shop in the world! This is incredible news and we are absolutely thrilled. This is the highest level of recognition a store like ours can achieve within the industry and it makes all our blood, sweat and tears worth it - and believe me, we have had (and continue to have) many of those.
Of course, the timing couldn't be worse, as sadly the doors to our store and bar, not to mention our online store, are all currently closed for business due to the Coronavirus lockdown, but at least it is a dose of good news to lighten the spirits in these trying times.
Congratulations to all the Icons of Whisky and World Whisky Awards winners! We are humbled and honoured to share the stage with you, particularly our friend and whisky legend Andy Watts for winning World Whisky Brand Ambassador, as well as the James Sedgwick Distillery (Sustainable Distillery) and Big Five Duty Free (Travel Retailer). To have South Africa win four global titles is a massive feat and something all of us can be proud of.
ICONS OF WHISKY 2020 GLOBAL WINNERS
Advertising Agency of the Year
Brand Innovator of the Year, sponsored by West Rock
PR Agency of the Year/Communications Agency of the Year
Communicator of the Year
Design Agency of the Year, sponsored by McLaren Packaging
Stranger & Stranger
Multiple Outlets Retailer of the Year
Online Retailer of the Year
La Maison du Whisky
Own Brand Supermarket of the Year
Single Outlet Retailer of the Year, sponsored by The Glenturret
Supermarket of the Year
Travel Retailer of the Year
Big Five Duty Free
Whisky Buyer of the Year
Pete Newton, Booths
Whisky Bar Group of the Year
Whisky Bar of the Year
Jack Rose Dining Saloon
Bar Manager of the Year
Frank Murphy, The Pot Still
Bartender of the Year
Cache Bouren, Haberdasher
Whisky Hotel Bar of the Year
The Tack Room, Adare Manor
Irish Whiskey Ambassador of the Year
Avril Hogan, Dingle Distillery
Scotch Whisky Ambassador of the Year
Georgie Bell, Barcardi Brands
World Whisky Ambassador of the Year
Andy Watts, Distell
American Whisky Ambassador of the Year
Thalita Alves, Brown-Forman
Distillery Manager of the Year, sponsored by Larkfire
Scott Sell, Westland Distillery
Master Distiller/Blender of the Year, sponsored by Steklarna Hrastnik
Billy Walker, The GlenAllachie Distillery
Sustainable Distillery, sponsored by Broxburn
The James Sedgwick Distillery
Visitor Attraction of the Year, sponsored by Christies
Buffalo Trace Distillery
Visitor Attraction Manager of the Year
Lisa Jameson, Teeling Distillery
Craft Producer of the Year, sponsored by Wade Ceramics
Campaign Innovator of the Year
Ardbeg Distillery, Masters of Smoke
Distiller of the Year, sponsored by Glencairn Crystal