Yes it’s the time of the year you dust off you tux, then put it back in the wardrobe because wearing a tux while splashing Hydrox 10 about is a sure way of wrecking a bow tie. Yes it’s award season, or award saison if you are talking about beers. The first of the big daddies is the IWSC, that’s International Wine Spoons and Cheese or something – anyway it’s held in London, it was our first time out and we won. Winning of course is relative, we got a Silver Outstanding for Blackwater No.5 Gin and a Silver for our Poteen. However as no gold was awarded in the Poteen category, relatively speaking our Poteen did better than our Gin, as it won its category.

IWSC 2015 Silver Outstanding Medal

The IWSC is interesting in that we entered about four months ago and forgot all about it. It took so long as the judging process is exhaustive and involves everyone being blindfolded and locked in a room with cases full of spirit until somebody spontaneously combusts. But for all it’s English complexity and fairness, like lesser competitions the IWSC has to cope with the Spinal Tap Amp Problem. You know, you’re at gold, all they way up, where can you go from there? Nowhere. So what to do for that extra push over the cliff?

A Cliff
A Cliff

The Award industry’s way of dealing with the Spinal Tap Amp Problem is to push its awards to 11. So once upon a time Gold was as good as it got. But nowadays gold is for pussies. Some competitions start gold at third place. Others just give everyone a gold, but stamp the gold with little stars. Others like the IWSC have Gold Outstanding as their 11, then go one further to Trophy, yes their amp goes all the way to 12!

The one thing we’ve learned about awards is that no matter how good it feels to win a gong for something you’ve made, it seems to be even buzzier to win an award for something you didn’t make. So we want to take this to it’s logical conclusion and win awards in categories we’re not allowed to enter. How about a Gold Outstanding stamped with Three Little Stars for the non-existent Blackwater Bourbon we’ve not made. Now you’re talking!

Gold award

That’s where the 2016 Non-Con Awards come in. It’s a competition we’ve just pulled out of our collective bum holes and it’s going to be awesome. For a start you get a Gold Trophy for just entering. We intend winning Best Genever, Best Jamaican Rum, Best Pisco, Best Parmesan and of course Best Blaa (filled and plain). If you want to pay us €300 you too can enter, just confirm you didn’t make the spirit in question and tell us what prize you want (with the exception of the above mentioned categories). We just want a pallet of booze and your credit card details. After you win we will sell you a high res jpeg of our logo for €150, a certificate (unframed) for €199 and a little roll of award stickers for €90. A pretend-stone plaque for the wall will set you back €400, a butt tattoo €3.95 and the cost of the banquet is on you.

From now on we're using own brand flour

After all, in a world where all competition are not equal, let’s just confuse the hell out of the public and get on with making some money!