October  23, 2020.

Awarding Spirits on Quality, Value, & Packaging 

Thank you for participating in 2020 USA Spirits Ratings.

Key Dates  Winning Impact 

The competition will take place on Oct 23, 2020, and winners will be announced on Nov 16, 2020.

About USA Spirits Ratings

USA Spirits Ratings: Spirits judged by Quality, Value, and Packaging.

Entries are now open for domestic and international spirits producers. For domestic and international distilleries looking to gain wider recognition within the U.S. marketplace, the USA Spirits rating event is a fantastic opportunity to get in front of the industry’s most influential tastemakers.


Key Dates

Judging Dates: October 23, 2020
Winners Announced: November 16, 2020

For spirits to stand out in the USA Spirits Ratings, they have to perform well in each of three separate judging criteria:

Quality. All spirits will be initially tasted blind to assess their quality and how drinkable they are for consumers in their target area.

Value for money.  Spirits will then be assessed to see how much value for money they are offering their target spirits drinkers at that price point.

Packaging and design. As the majority of spirits is bought with our eyes, the USA Spirits Ratings will recognise spirits that stand out on the shelf, or on a back bar, and will assess how well suited that design or packaging is to their target consumer group and at that price point.

Key Dates

Judging Dates: October 23, 2020
Winners Announced: November 16, 2020


Key Dates

Judging Dates: October 23, 2020
Winners Announced: November 16, 2020

Fee Schedule

Submissions closed.

The USA Spirits Ratings looks to recognize, reward and help promote spirits brands that have successfully been created to identify with and target a specific spirits drinker. For any brand to earn its place on a retailer’s shelf or a bar's list - and then vitally stay there - they need to be marketable and consumer-driven and not just produced in the general hope it can find enough people willing to sell and buy it.




Meet our 2020 Judges

Nicky Beyries

Bar Director: Foreign Cinema, Laszlo & Events; Cannabis Beverage Expert

Michael Cecconi

Bartender in Residence at Stirred Mixology Instructor, Monday Night Mixology & The Institute of Culinary Education

Nat Harry

Spirits Specialist and Agave Club Manager at Cask Store


USA Spirits Ratings Medals
Gold Medal

+90 Points

Silver Medal

+80 Points

Bronze Medal

+70 Points

Judging Formula

To win a USA Spirits Ratings award you will need to score highly in all three areas of our judging criteria. You might have an outstanding quality spirit, but if the price and packaging is not right, you will not be recognized by the USA Spirits Ratings. There is no point, for example, in having a 95 points if it does not look good or offer consumers great value for money. Those points mean it will remain highly respected within the trade, but it will also remain largely unsold on the shelf or languishing on a restaurant’s spirits list.

That is why USA Spirits Ratings is the leading spirits ratings in the USA with the rationale to rate spirits per the preferences of the consumer and trade and rewarding spirits as such. Spirits entries will be judged by their Quality, Value and Packaging.

Scoring System

Q (Quality Score) + Value Score (V) + Packaging Score (P) = USA Spirits Ratings Score.

A separate weighted score will be given for each of the three parts of the judging process. The scores will be added up to give a final score from which individual prizes will be awarded.

Quality Score: will be marked out of 50

Value Score: will be marked out of 25

Package Score: will be marked out of 25

Quality Score

Quality will be assessed based on how agreeable the spirits is for its target customer and chemical analysis. USR will measure quality by Appearance, Aroma, Body, Taste and Aftertaste.

Value Score

Value in this context means how well the spirits is priced based on its quality. If you think it offers excellent value, the score should be close to 100 of 100 and if you think it should be priced lower, then the score should be low. The metric to be used here is the retail price vs quality.

Packaging Score

Packaging in this context is measured by how well you think the spirits will be perceived by the consumer. This includes label, bottle colour, bottle shape and closure. This does not involve boxes, cartons and bags. It is how you think the product will be perceived when placed on spirits shelf amongst thousands of other spirits.

Who are the Judges?

The USA Spirits Ratings(USR) will be assessed and judged by a leading panel of top-level spirits buyers with current direct commercial buying responsibility. The list of judges will be drawn from leading retail chains, wholesalers, distributors and on-trade groups across a variety of channels and disciplines including multiple retailing, convenience stores, cash and carries, specialist retailers, casual and fine dining, hospitality and the travel industry.

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Thank You For Participating In 2020 USA Spirits Ratings!

The competition will take place on October 23, 2020, and winners will be announced on November 16, 2020.

Winning Impact