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World Whiskies Awards 2009 - The Winners

World Whiskies Awards 2009

This year's competition saw more than 150 whiskies put through their paces during three rounds of tastings to win the coveted titles of “Best in the World”. Once again this year's competition has been incredibly hard fought with some of the winners being separated by very slim margins.

Impressively for the second year running in both the Grain and Whisky Liqueur categories, the winners retained their top spots showing great consistancy.

There have been intensive rounds of tastings by Whisky Magazine's independent editorial panel drawn from the best journalists and retailers across the world, and also by industry representatives made up of master blenders, distillers and brand ambassadors. To get to the final results three rounds of blind tastings were held.

Round one was conducted by the editorial panel at their homes. The judges were simply sent sample bottles marked with the ABV and category.

We split the whiskies up by regions and styles. The entries were then divided up among the judges, who then tasted and marked the spirits out of 10.

The highest scoring whiskies in this round gave us the subcategory winners, for instance the Best Speyside Single Malt Whisky 12 Years and Under, which then went forward to the second round of tastings, held in London with some of the best noses in the industry judging them.

The winners of this second round gave us our category winners, for instance Best Highland Single Malt whisky, which were then sent back to the editorial panel to do battle for the overall titles.

The competition featured some outstanding whiskies and the judges had a hard time separating the very good from the good.

In some categories, particularly if only one whisky entered, it was still put through the tasting wringer to make sure it deserved an the award.

A little different from last year is that we awarded a Best Scotch Single Malt for the whisky that scored the most points during the final round of tasting.

Our congratulations go to the winners and we hope that you will have fun exploring some of the whiskies that performed exceptionally this year.



Winner : Highland Park 21 Years Old

Category Winners

World’s Best Highland Single Malt Whisky Glenmorangie 25 Years Old
World’s Best Speyside Single Malt Whisky Glenlivet Archive 21 Years Old
World’s Best Irish Single Malt Whiskey Tyrconnell single cask
World’s Best Campbeltown Single Malt Whisky Springbank 15 Years Old
World’s Best Lowlands Single Malt Whisky Glenkinchie Distillers Edition
World’s Best Island Non Islay Single Malt Whisky Highland Park 21 Years Old
World’s Best Islay Peated Single Malt Whisky Lagavulin 16 Years Old
World’s Best Islay Unpeated Single Malt Whisky Bunnahabhain 18 Years Old
World’s Best Scotch Single Malt Whisky Highland Park 21 Years Old
World’s Best Other Single Malt Whisky Mackmyra First Edition
World’s Best Japanese Single Malt Whisky Hakushu 25 Years Old

Sub Category Winners

Highland 12 and Under Glencadam 10 Years Old
Highland 13-20 Years Old Glenmorangie 18 Years Old
Highland 21 and Over Glenmorangie 25 Years Old
Highland No age Balblair 1990
Speyside 12 and Under Glendronach 12 Years Old
Speyside 13-20 Years Old Longmorn 16 Years Old
Speyside 21 and Over Glenlivet Archive21 Years Old
Speyside No age Cragganmore Distillers Edition
Irish 12 and Under Tyrconnell Sherry Cask
Irish 13-20 Years Old Tyrconnell Single Cask
Irish No age Connemara peated
Campbeltown 12 and Under Springbank 100 Proof
Campbeltown 13-20 Years Old Springbank 15 Years Old
Campbeltown No age Longrow CV
Lowlands 12 and Under Auchentoshan 12 Years Old
Lowlands No age Glenkinchie Distillers Edition
Island Non Islay12 and Under Arran 12 Years Old
Island Non Islay13-20 Years Old Scapa 16 Years Old
Island Non Islay 21 and Over Highland Park 21 Years Old
IslayUnpeated 12 and Under Bunnahabhain 12 Years Old
Islay Unpeated 13-20 Years Old Bunnahabhain 18 Years Old
Islay Peated 12 and Under Ardbeg 10 Years Old
Islay Peated 13-20 Years Old Lagavulin 16 Years Old
Islay Peated No age Ardbeg Airigh nam beist
Japanese No age Miyagiko
Japanese 12 and Under Cask of Hakushu
Japanese 13-20 Years Old Yamazaki heavily peated
Japanese 21 and Over Hakushu 25 Years Old
Other 12 Years and Under Three Ships 5 Years Old
Other No age Lark Distillery Cask LD100
Other No age Mackmyra First Edition


Winner : Hankey Bannister 40 Years Old

Category Winners

World’s Best Scotch Blended Whisky Hanky Bannister 40 Years Old
World’sBest Japanese Blended Whisky Nikkaf rom the barrel
World’sBest Irish Blended Whiskey Jameson Rarest Vintage Reserve

Sub Category Winners

Scotch Blended 12 and Under Lawson's Gold 12 Years Old
Scotch Blended 13-20 Years Old Dewar's 18 Years Old
Scotch Blended 21 and Over Hanky Bannister 40 Years Old
Scotch Blended No age Dewar's Signature
Japanese Blended No age Nikka from the barrel
Japanese Blended 13-20 Years Old Hibiki 17 Years Old
Japanese Blended 21 and Over Hibiki 21 Years Old
Irish Blended 12 and Under Powers 12 Years Old
Irish Blended 13-20 Years Old Kilbeggan 15 Years Old
Irish Blended No age Jameson Rarest Vintage Reserve


Winner : Taketsuru 21 Years old

Category Winners

World’s Best Scotch Blended Malt Compass Box Peat Monster
World’s Best Scotch Blended Malt Monkey Shoulder
World’s Best Non-Scotch Blended Malt No age Ichiro's Malt Double Distilleries
World’s Best Non-Scotch Blended Malt 21 Years and Over Taketsuru 21 Years Old


Winner : Thomas H. Handy Straight Rye Whiskey

Category Winners

World’s Best Bourbon Pappy Van Winkle 20 Years Old
World’s Best Wheat Whiskey Bernheim Wheat
World’s Best Rye Whiskey Thomas H.Handy

Sub Category Winners

Bourbon No age Four Roses Small Batch
Bourbon 8 Years and Over Pappy Van Winkle 20 Years Old
Bourbon 8 Years and Over George T Stagg
Wheat No age Bernheim Wheat
Rye No age Thomas H.Handy


Winner : Compass Box Hedonism

Category Winners

World’s Best Blended Grain Whisky Compass Box Hedonism
World’sBest Single Grain Whisky Greenore15 Years Old
World’s Best Japanese Grain Whisky Suntory Chita


Winner : Highland Park 40 Years Old


The best new release is selected from those proprietory bottlings which have won agold medal in Whisky Magazine's tasting section during the year. They were:

Highland Park 40 Years Old
Glenmorangie Astar
Glenmorangie Signet
Sazerac Rye 14 Years Old
Tomatin 30 Years Old

Whisky Liquer

Winner : Wild Turkey American Honey

Thick texture, a sweet nose with sherbert lemons, sticky sweet but pleasantly clean Charles Maclean

Bananas, chocolate covered cherries with gooey filling, orange zest. Sweet full bodied front leads to a powdered hard candy finish with a hint of lavender LeNell

Orangey, very sweet. Sugar dominates on the palate, with the same orange note as the nose. Orange peel, hint of spices and syrupy feel Martine Nouet

In-your-face herbal and sweet, almost like children's cough medicine. Bitter citric notes balance the sweetness so it doesn't cloy. Not a dram but a digestif Davin de Kergommeaux

Honey candy laced with blue flowers. Corn syrup spiked with chardonnay Liza Weisstuch

Orange-honey nose. Pepsin-spice and honey notes make it a pleasing combination for a liqueur William Dowd

Category Winners

World’s Best Cream Liqueur Dunkeld Atholl Brose
World’s Best non-Cream Liqueur Wild Turkey American Honey

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