MARKETING/DESIGN/CONSUMER TRENDS/INSPIRATIONS Cognac & Brandy News for Consumers & Industry Experts

The Other Games in the UK – Results of the 2012 International Wine & Spirit Competition

I am going to talk about the UK and gold medals … I know everyone has the eyes riveted on the UK right now watching the London 2012 Olympic Games but this is not about the OG. This is a different kind of competition called the International Wine & Spirit Competition (ISWC).


The International Wine & Spirit Competition released the results of its 2012 ratings for spirits this week. The results for the wine category were already announced in June. Traditionally, spirits results come one month after the wines.


ISWC was founded in 1969 and is one of the premier wine & spirits rating international competition. SEE PREVIOUS BLOG in JULY 2012 for a review of the best wine & spirits rating competitions. Its aim is to promote the quality and excellence of the world’s best wines, spirits and liqueurs.


Besides the rigorous judging completed by a panel of professional experts at the ISWC, this competition is unique in the sense that the spirits are lab tested through chemical and microbiological analysis by an independent laboratory. This add a rather scientific twist to this competition which I have find rather academic and professional but it does not play much role in the rating itself.


My Comments:

. Congratulations to Baron Otard which I think is the ‘grand’ winner from this competition. As a matter of fact, right now I am working on a blog just on Baron Otard as I was there a few days ago dressed like a tourist walking around incognito. My take is that they have made a great improvement towards better quality cognacs.

. These ratings also announce the return of Bisquit I suppose.

. Rémy Martin VSOP Mature Cask Finish Cognac (receives Silver Outstanding) is the new expression of Remy VSOP and it is replacing the enigmatic dark green frosted bottle with a more common clear glass bottle. I like to see the color of cognac so I am more in favor of the clear glass. But I am sure it must not have been an easy decision to make.

. Courvoisier 21 and 12 collection is not consensual but it surely get a great score with a gold medal for the 21.

. As one would predict, Hine is particularly well represented with modest ratings for the premium cognacs. I think their Hine Rare VSOP is outstanding so no surprise to me.

. Cognac Park Extra is rewarded with a gold medal which is perfectly justified.

. Many private labels and sub-brands have done well, so business as usual.

. Some surprises and questions unanswered to me: why they are so many brands which have their VS and XO rated the same, as well as for instance the 4 distilleries from Royer rated the same, I do not think it is possible and I wonder … I have had a number of experience where I could not prefer a VSOP to a VS, or an XO to a VSOP, but there should be a significant gap in evaluating between a VS and an XO!



Baron Otard VSOP

Hine Rare VSOP

Frapin Chateau Fontpinot Cognac Grande Champagne XO

ISWC Winners 2012

ISWC Winners 2012



Courvoisier 21 Cognac Grande Champagne

Bisquit Cognac VSOP

Bisquit Prestige Blended Cognac VSOP

Cognac Park XO Extra Grande Champagne

Louis Royer Extra Grande Champagne Cognac

Dupuy Tentation Cognac XO



ABK6 Cognac Extra

Cognac Leyrat VSOP Premium Fins Bois

Cognac Leyrat XO Fine Bois

Double Crown Cognac VSOP (ABK6)

Courvoisier XO

Baron Otard VS

Baron Otard XO Gold

Cognac Croizet 989

Cognac de Luze XO Fine Champagne

Pierre Ferrand Ancestrale

Cognac Campagnere VSOP

Rémy Martin VSOP Mature Cask Finish Cognac

Rémy Martin Vintage 1989 Cognac

H by Hine VSOP

Bache-Gabrielsen Grande Champagne Cognac Hors d’Age

Cognac Prulho Eclat XO



A. de Fussigny XO 24 Carats

Cognac Reviseur XO Petite Champagne

Double Crown Cognac XO Extra Petite Champagne (ABK6)

Albert De Montaubert Cognac Extra

Chevalier Cognac VS

Courvoisier VS

Bisquit Cognac VS Classique

Bisquit Blended Cognac XO

Marks and Spencer Monnet Cognac VSOP

Ile de Ré Fine Island Cognac

Camus VS Elegance Cognac

Camus VSOP Elegance Cognac

Camus XO Elegance Cognac

Baron Otard Extra 1795

Cognac Croizet XO Grande Champagne

Cognac Croizet Expo Universelle

Cognac Alfred de Luze Fine Champagne

Cognac Gautier 1755 Extra

Cognac Gautier VSOP

Cognac VSOP Prince Hubert de Polignac

Deau Cognac Black Collection

Deau Cognac Louis Memory Collection

Deau Cognac VSOP

Richelieu XO Fine Champagne Cognac (Distell Ltd)

Merlet Cognac Brothers Blend

Rémy Martin Centaure Cognac

Rémy Martin 1898 Coupe Fine Champagne

Hine Antique XO 1er Cru

Jenssen Cognac XO Grande Champagne

Jenssen Epiphanie Hors d’Age Cognac Grande Chamapagne

Vieux Garçon Cognac V.S.  (Lidl UK)

Hienoa Konjakkia VS 6 Year Old  ( Lignell & Piispanen – )

Louis Royer VS Cognac

Louis Royer VSOP Cognac

Louis Royer XO Cognac

Distillerie Chantal Bons Bois Cognac (Louis Royer)

Distillerie D’Aumagne Fins Bois Cognac (Louis Royer)

Distillerie des Saules Borderies Cognac (Louis Royer)

Distillerie de L’Ecole Petite Champagne Cognac (Louis Royer)

Cognac Leopold Raffin VSOP

Martell XO

Hine Homage to Thomas Hine Cognac XO

XO Royal Prince Hubert de Polignac



Courvoisier Connoisseur Collection 12 YO

Ile de Ré – Double Matured Cognac

Ile de Ré – Cliffside Cellar Cognac

Cognac Croizet VSOP Grande Champagne Cognac

Cognac Croizet Extra Grande Champagne

Pierre Ferrand Sélection des Anges

Cognac Gautier VS

Cognac Gautier XO Gold & Blue

Cognac VS Prince Hubert de Polignac

Cognac XO Prince Hubert de Polignac

Deau Cognac VS Elegance

Deau Cognac XO Collection

Cognac Park XO

Cognac Campagnere XO

Cognac Maison Rouge VSOP (ie, Hardy/H. Mounier)

Martell Cordon Bleu

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This entry was posted on August 1, 2012 by in Competitions and tagged , , , .
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