Winning Liquor Brands

Wine of the year,top honours and trophies galore for our best brands

Glen Grant scoops multiple top honours in 2018 Whisky Bible

The Whisky Bible, Jim Murray’s authoritative guide for whisky connoisseurs everywhere, has rated single malt specialist, Glen Grant, a world best. Again.

The flagship 18 Year Old Single Malt has been chosen as one of the world’s finest three whiskies for 2018, competing against all styles and ages of whisky, made not only in Scotland but in Ireland, the US, Canada, Japan and Australia. This is the second time the luxury single malt has starred on the coveted list of Murray’s favourites for the year.

It’s also the second time in succession that Glen Grant’s 18 Year Old has been crowned Scotch Whisky of the Year and Single Malt of the Year, as well as best single malt in the 16- to 21-year age category, winning the same titles it did in 2017 and prompting Murray to say: “Once more Scotland owes a debt of honour to the celebrated Glen Grant distillery which again displayed Speyside whisky in its most sparkling light.”

But those were not the only Whisky Bible honours accorded Speyside’s famous barley to bottle distillery in Rothes. Remarkably, for the sixth year running, Murray awarded Glen Grant’s 10 Year Old the title of Best Single Malt aged 10 years or less. (The whisky is also an International Wine & Spirit Competition gold medallist.) 

The whisky was also the best performer in the category of Unpeated Single Malt Scotch of 18–25 years old with cask strength of 45% and more, to bring home a double gold medal.

Founded in Rothes in 1840, Glen Grant is also renowned for the invention of a tall potstill for a smoother, finer-grained single malt style, flavour and texture. It revolutionised whisky then and still sets Glen Grant apart.  

Nederburg wins IWSC trophy again – this time for its II Centuries Cabernet Sauvignon 2013

The 2013 vintage of Nederburg II Centuries Cabernet Sauvignon has been awarded the coveted Warren Winiarski Trophy for the best Cabernet Sauvignon at the 2017 International Wine & Spirit Competition (IWSC), judged alongside equivalents from various wine-producing countries.

“We are thrilled to have won the IWSC trophy for the best Cabernet Sauvignon, twice in a row,” says Andrea Freeborough, Nederburg’s cellarmaster. “Most interestingly, both IWSC trophy-winning wines – the II Centuries Cabernet Sauvignon 2013 and Private Bin R163 Cabernet Sauvignon 2013 – were blended at Nederburg on the same day in October 2015! 

“Stylistically, the two wines are very distinct, each made from a unique set of individually selected barrels. Both are superbly made by hand, using meticulously selected grapes, with the utmost attention to detail applied during the winemaking process.  


“Nederburg II Centuries Cabernet Sauvignon 2013 is classically styled – a true expression of two top-performing dry-farmed vineyards in Paarl. Both sites are low-yielding and produce small-berried, loose bunches picked at a suitable level of phenolic ripeness. While Cabernet bunches tend to be fairly compact, the prevailing micro-climatic conditions were conducive to a looser bunch formation, making for more even ripening. The grapes for this specific wine were selected from individual vines, yielding small berries with concentrated dark berry fruit. The chosen fruit was then further sorted at the cellar and after vinification, spent 30 months in new, second- and third-fill 300-litre French oak barrels. The resultant wine is rich but refreshing, beautifully balanced and with ripe, supple tannins and signature notes of black fruit, plums, cassis and cigar box.”

Platter’s 2018 Red Wine of the Year: Nederburg II Centuries Cabernet Sauvignon 2014

Nederburg’s II Centuries Cabernet Sauvignon 2014 has been selected as the prestigious Red Wine of the Year in the 2018 edition (the 38th issue) of the Platter’s by Diners Club South African Wine Guide, considered the most authoritative guide to South African wine.

The wine also achieved a five-star rating in the newly released guide, as did the Paarl winery’s Private Bin R109 Cabernet Sauvignon Merlot 2014. 

Five-star ratings are reserved for wines that are considered “South African classics” and scored 95 points or more. Nederburg’s II Centuries Cabernet Sauvignon 2014 achieved 99 points, while the Private Bin R109 Cabernet Sauvignon Merlot 2014 earned 95 points. 

Nederburg was also highlighted as the most awarded winery since the inception of Platter’s in 1980, with an impressive total of 42 wines achieving five-star ratings over the period.

Andrea Freeborough, Nederburg’s cellarmaster, says: “The fruit for II Centuries Cabernet Sauvignon 2014 was sourced from two dryland sites in the Paarl area. The fruit growing at lower altitudes contributed 60% to the blend and provided the strong aromatic features and dark fruit flavours. The grapes from vines situated at higher altitudes provided lovely red fruit flavours. 

“It’s a delicious wine of outstanding quality, with signature notes of dark fruit, tobacco leaf and cigar box nuances. Rich, ripe, dark-berried fruits dominate the palate and harmonise with oak to produce a generous, mouth-filling profusion of flavours, tempered by firm tannins.” 

Bunnahabhain 18 Year Old Single Malt wins IWSC trophy

Specialty Scotch whisky producer, Bunnahabhain, has been awarded the coveted Cask Strength Scotch Whisky Trophy for its 18 Year Old single malt at the 2017 International Wine & Spirits Competition (IWSC) in the United Kingdom. 

The whisky was also the best performer in the category of Unpeated Single Malt Scotch of 18–25 years old with cask strength of 45% and more, to bring home a double gold medal.

Bunnahabhain’s 25 Year Old single malt earned a gold medal. 

The Islay distillery’s ensemble of handcrafted single malts has captivated palates the world over for many years. Other recent accolades include a double gold medal for its 25 Year Old and gold for its 12 Year Old malts at the San Francisco World Spirits Competition earlier this year. The 12 Year Old also took gold at the 2017 World Whisky Awards. 

These awards come as no surprise, considering the exceptional quality and taste profile of these exclusive and rare whiskies, handmade with the utmost attention to detail. 

Bunnahabhain (pronounced Bŭ-na-ha-venn) is the only producer of single malts on the island of Islay, situated off the west coast of Scotland, and uses a natural spring water source in the production of its malts. The Margadale River that flows deep underground, untainted by the peaty moors on the island, enables the distillery to make lighter-flavoured, unpeated single malt whiskies.