South African distiller takes

Photo: Adobe Stock

South African distiller takes top honours at the World Gin Awards

It was a battle of the nations at the recent World Gin Awards, with KWV tasting success with a historical win.

South African distiller takes

Photo: Adobe Stock

And among entries from England, France, Japan, Canada, Germany, China, Italy, Denmark, Spain, Belgium and Sweden, it was a South African brand that landed top honours for the Best London Dry Gin.

Held in London, the 2020 victory will always be memorable for KWV Cruxland Gin. It was a first-time win for the label, but also the first time in history that a South African gin has secured this title.

In 2018 and 2019, the brand had only made it to the first round. But in 2020, when the globe’s best-tasting and best-designed gins were announced at the Honourable Artillery Company, in London, during the Gin Magazine Awards dinner, Cruxland was finally in the winner’s lineup.

Stiff competition

World Gin Awards awards director Anita Ujszaszi revealed that more than 150 gin brands from 39 countries entered the 2020 London Dry Gin category.

It was stiff competition, but only one could stand out.

“Judges unanimously agreed that Cruxland is tremendously clean and well balanced with a beautiful fragrance. A fantastic example of a London Dry Gin. Considering the increased number of high-quality entries, our international judging panel was very impressed.”

Gin in its purest form

Contrary to what the name suggests, London Dry Gin doesn’t actually have to use ingredients from London or be bottled in the city. It’s actually a type of gin that became popular in the United Kingdom, but is now made and drunk worldwide.

According to Good Housekeeping, it’s the highest quality gin you can produce as it has to have all natural ingredients, be made with high-quality alcohol and only contain 0.01g of sugar per litre of alcohol.

“It has to be distilled with botanicals to get the flavour, and you can’t add any artificial flavourings or additives after distillation. It’s kind of gin in its purest form.”

Test of time: KWV Cruxland

According to Bizcommunity, Kurt Schlechter, a well-known South African drinks consultant, KWV Cruxland Gin won because it delivers on the basic requirements, but also because its stood the test of time.

“I absolutely love the growth of gin and the simultaneous development of people’s palates. Drinking has become more sophisticated in South Africa, and we can mostly thank the gin category for that. To have an award-winning gin, you need three things: An exceptional product, passionate people and staying power. Cruxland has all of the above.” 

Other winners at the awards included Marylebone Orange & Geranium Gin in the World’s Best Flavoured Gin category, 

And in the World’s Best Signature Botanical Gin category, a label called African Dry Gin from distillery company Copper Republic came out tops to become the 2020 title holder.