Gin has experienced extraordinary growth around the world in recent years. These trends are being reflected in South Africa, where a phenomenal increase in the popularity of craft gin is being experienced.

Driven by the quest for authenticity and provenance, local distillers have crafted their own distinctive South African interpretations of this spirit.

Unique local ingredients such as Karoo botanicals, buchu, rooibos, kalahari truffles, wild dagga, honey bush and devil’s claw have all found their way into original and exciting expressions of this increasingly popular and versatile drink.

Entries for 2022 are now open!

ENTER NOW

The Competition

The SA Craft Gin Awards are the home of the inaugural South African Craft Gin Awards.

These awards represent the first dedicated competition for South African craft gins, and have been founded to celebrate and promote the finest craft gins distilled in South Africa.

The gins will be judged by a panel of judges who will blind taste to discover the top South African Craft Gins.

Double and gold awards will be awarded to the outstanding gins.

ENTER NOW

The Judges

Chairperson of the Judging Panel

Pieter de Bod

We are delighted to welcome Pieter as judge and Panel Chair.

With 25 years in the distilling industry, Pieter’s range of experience spans the category.

In 2011 he moved to KWV as General Manager, responsible for the production of white and brown spirits, liqueurs and the R&D function. He has been their General Manager, Spirits since 2020.

He confesses to be passionate about pot and column distillation, spirit blending, new product development and wine and spirit tasting and judging.

As a spirit maven, his passions are evident in his achievements, with KWV winning numerous awards for Best Brandy and Cognac and Brandy Producer of the Year at ISC and IWSC. KWV also brought home the award for Best South African London Dry Gin two years in a row for KWV Cruxland Gin.

It’s an honour to have Pieter join the SA Craft Gin Awards.

 

The Tasting Judges

The gins will be judged by a panel of judges who will blind taste to discover the top South African Craft Gins. The judging panel is comprised of a cross section of industry specialists, with an in-depth knowledge of gin and the drinks industry, including the on-trade.

The judging scores will be overseen by an auditor and are certified at the end of the judging process.

Jean Buckham

All round gin expert and fundi. Founder and owner of The Gin Box, a craft gin club showcasing the very best of SA craft gins. Jean has one of the most experienced gin judging palates in the country. This is her 3rd year of judging in this competition.

Thierry Lubala

Head Barman, mixologist and gin connoisseur at Sansibar at Asara Estate – Africa’s largest gin collection with over 500 varieties. This is Thierry’s second year on the the judging panel for SA Craft Gin. He says of the inaugural gin judging in 2019 “It was my dream job.”

Danielle Schoeman

Danielle, one of the few female distillers in South Africa, founded Dona distillery with its custom-built vacuum stills in 2019 after becoming fascinated with the process of making her own Spirits. Her passion around the entire distillation process – from sourcing local raw materials to picking her own botanicals – grew, and by 2020 Dona had already won multiple international awards for her innovative products. Danielle loves a challenge and focuses on the more unconventional spirit categories. She sees herself as an ambitious distiller with a vision to produce the highest quality products by continuously innovating and pushing the envelope.

The Judges

Chairperson of the Judging Panel

Pieter de Bod

We are delighted to welcome Pieter as judge and Panel Chair.

With 25 years in the distilling industry, Pieter’s range of experience spans the category.

In 2011 he moved to KWV as General Manager, responsible for the production of white and brown spirits, liqueurs and the R&D function. He has been their General Manager, Spirits since 2020.

He confesses to be passionate about pot and column distillation, spirit blending, new product development and wine and spirit tasting and judging.

As a spirit maven, his passions are evident in his achievements, with KWV winning numerous awards for Best Brandy and Cognac and Brandy Producer of the Year at ISC and IWSC. KWV also brought home the award for Best South African London Dry Gin two years in a row for KWV Cruxland Gin.

It’s an honour to have Pieter join the SA Craft Gin Awards.

The Tasting Judges

The gins will be judged by a panel of judges who will blind taste to discover the top South African Craft Gins. The judging panel is comprised of a cross section of industry specialists, with an in-depth knowledge of gin and the drinks industry, including the on-trade.

The judging scores will be overseen by an auditor and are certified at the end of the judging process.

Jean Buckham

All round gin expert and fundi. Founder and owner of The Gin Box, a craft gin club showcasing the very best of SA craft gins. Jean has one of the most experienced gin judging palates in the country. This is her 3rd year of judging in this competition.

Thierry Lubala

Head Barman, mixologist and gin connoisseur at Sansibar at Asara Estate – Africa’s largest gin collection with over 500 varieties. This is Thierry’s second year on the the judging panel for SA Craft Gin. He says of the inaugural gin judging in 2019 “It was my dream job.” 

Danielle Schoeman

Danielle, one of the few female distillers in South Africa, founded Dona distillery with its custom-built vacuum stills in 2019 after becoming fascinated with the process of making her own Spirits. Her passion around the entire distillation process – from sourcing local raw materials to picking her own botanicals – grew, and by 2020 Dona had already won multiple international awards for her innovative products.

Danielle loves a challenge and focuses on the more unconventional spirit categories.

She sees herself as an ambitious distiller with a vision to produce the highest quality products by continuously innovating and pushing the envelope.

Our Sponsors

How to Enter

Dates for the SA Gin Awards 2022

Download the entry form below.

The cost of entry is R900 per label.

Entries open:
3 May 2022

Entries close:
12 August 2022

Sample bottles (2) to be delivered:
23 & 24 August 2022

Judging:
25 & 26 August 2022

Results:
6 September 2022

DOWNLOAD WORD ENTRY FORM
DOWNLOAD PDF ENTRY FORM