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2019 SA Craft Gin Awards Articles

Here is the collection of all the articles where Smiths Gins were featured for their win at the 2019 South African Craft Gin awards held in Cape Town.





Read below for more and click the links to read the full article:


Eat Play Drink - SA CRAFT GIN AWARDS 2019 ANNOUNCED

by Bianca Coleman 27 Aug 2019

LAST week we attended the inaugural South African Craft Gin Awards, presented by Checkers LiquorShop, at the Belmond Mount Nelson Hotel, where we quickly learned that to taste as many as gins in as short a time as possible, to ditch the tonic (no offence towards Barker & Quin intended). It was a practical move.


The thing is, if you have a full glass of gin and tonic and garnishes and ice – as we began with Amari – it simply takes too long to drink, and there were so many others to try. As it was, we didn’t get through all of them, and all of them were – are- winners. It was great to sample the wares, marvel over the luscious packaging and bottle designs, and to chat to the distillers. The canapés served after the award ceremony were excellent too, thank you Mount Nelson.

Yes, we tried Indlovu, the one made from elephant dung, and it was actually jolly good if you can not think about the process for a few minutes. In a room full of amazing gins, each so very different from the other, I have to single out the Die Soet Rooinek from De Vry in, well, the Free State. Made with fresh cherries, which have a short summer season, the distillers have a very labour intensive December when three tons of the fruit arrives. The distillery won double gold for its dry London style gin.


It was great to bump into old friend AC Goodger, who is the marketing manager at Nuy (between Worcester and Robertson). Twenty-six locally distilled craft gins received the highest accolade of Double Gold awards from an entry of 110 gins from more than 50 distilleries all over South Africa, and Nuy was one of those.


“We are truly blessed and happy to be acknowledged by The 2019 SA Craft Gin Awards for both our gins,” he commented. “We are comfortable making great wines, but gins are new territory.

“We tried and tested and came up with two gins born from complex, yet balanced recipes which caters for all gin lovers. When you taste one of these gins I am certain to add yet another fan to the Nuy gin family.”


The gins were blind tasted by an expert panel of judges with in-depth knowledge of the drinks industry:

  • Roger Jorgensen – the father of South African gin

  • Dr Anna Trapido – wine and spirits judge and food anthropologist

  • Thierry Lubala – mixologist at South Africa’s largest gin bar at Asara Estate

  • Jean Buckham – owner of The Gin Box, a craft gin club showcasing different SA craft gins

  • Hanneli van der Merwe – oenologist and co-owner of Barker & Quin Mixers

  • Tammy Frazer – perfumer and owner of Frazer Parfum

“South African gin distillers are superb when they ace it as they develop their own style and techniques. Given the plethora of wonderful botanicals here it is no wonder that the Cape is the new gin capital of the world,” said Jorgensen.

On the future of the gin industry in South Africa he added: “The future is bright and SA can be a global player, it has only just begun. Gin has been around for a long time and due to its versatile nature will not disappear overnight.”

The Double Gold award-winning gins are:

  • A Mari Atlantic Ocean and A Mari Indian Ocean gins

  • Copper Republic African Dry and Copper Republic Rooibos & Grapefruit gins

  • Die Dröe Rooinek Dry Gin

  • Flowstone Bushwillow Gin

  • Geometric Classic Cape Dry Gin

  • Ginologist Spice Gin

  • Harmony Aloe Ferox Gin

  • Indlovu Gin – Elephant Dung Gin

  • Jin Gin Olive & Honey and Jin Gin Tomato & Sweet Piquante Pepper gins

  • Knut Hansen Dry Gin – a South African version of the German original

  • Lieben Sailor Lemon & Lime Gin

  • Magalies Lavender Gin

  • Monks Medella Blueberry Infused and Monks Mary Jane Hemp Infused gins

  • Nuy Legacy and Nuy Mastery gins

  • Old N1 African Dry and Old N1 Fijnbos Fields gins

  • Old Packhouse Moringa Gin

  • Pienaar & Son Empire and Pienaar & Son Orient gins

  • Smiths Elderflower Dry and Smiths Spiced Dry gins

  • Wild Rose Fynbos Gin

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SA Craft Gin Awards 2019 – 5 of the quirkiest winners you have to try

by Food24; August 22, 2019 in Food News


The glamorous Belmond Mount Nelson Hotel was the setting for the inaugural South African Craft Gin Awards, presented by Checkers LiquorShop. 

Over 110 gins from 50 local distilleries entered the competition, but it was only 26 stunning spirits that walked away with the coveted Double Gold Award. 


The South African Craft Gin Awards is the largest gin competition in the country and the only dedicated competition for craft gin distillers in South Africa. Commenting on the awards, Roger Jorgensen said: “South African gin distillers are superb when they ace it, as they develop their own style and techniques. Given the plethora of wonderful botanicals here, it is no wonder that the Cape is the new gin capital of the world.”


On the future of the gin industry in South Africa, he added: “The future is bright and SA can be a global player; it has only just begun. Gin has been around for a long time and due to its versatile nature will not disappear overnight.”


The full list of Double Gold Award winners at the SA Craft Gin Awards 2019:A Mari Atlantic Ocean and A Mari Indian Ocean gins, Copper Republic African Dry and Copper Republic Rooibos & Grapefruit gins, Die Dröe Rooinek Dry Gin, Flowstone Bushwillow Gin, Geometric Classic Cape Dry Gin, Ginologist Spice Gin, Harmony Aloe Ferox Gin, Indlovu Gin – Elephant Dung Gin, Jin Gin Olive & Honey and Jin Gin Tomato & Sweet Piquante Pepper gins, Knut Hansen Dry Gin – a South African version of the German original, Lieben Sailor Lemon & Lime Gin, Magalies Lavender Gin, Monks Medella Blueberry Infused and Monks Mary Jane Hemp Infused gins, Nuy Legacy and Nuy Mastery gins, Old N1 African Dry and Old N1 Fijnbos Fields gins, Old Packhouse Moringa Gin, Pienaar & Son Empire and Pienaar & Son Orient gins, Smiths Elderflower Dry and Smiths Spiced Dry gins, Wild Rose Fynbos Gin


Winners of SA’s first Craft Gin Awards announced

Published by Imogen Searra on August 23, 2019


The inaugural South African Craft Gin Awards, presented by Checkers LiquorShop, took place on Wednesday, August 21. Held in the suave Planet Bar of the Belmond Mount Nelson Hotel, the evening was teeming with creatives from the South African gin scene.

It is the largest gin competition in the country and the only dedicated one for craft gin distillers in South Africa.


Upon arrival, we were given a generous gin class to encourage us to try the nominee’s delicious creations. After circling the room my first gin of choice was the delectable Blind Tiger Gin. I sampled both the original and the blue, both were sensational.

Before I could try something else, the ceremony began and the atmosphere was brimming with excitement.


Twenty-six locally distilled craft gins received the highest accolade of Double Gold awards from an entry of 110 gins from over 50 distilleries all over South Africa.


The Double Gold award-winning gins are:

– A Mari Atlantic Ocean and A Mari Indian Ocean gins

– Copper Republic African Dry and Copper Republic Rooibos & Grapefruit gins

– Die Dröe Rooinek Dry Gin

– Flowstone Bushwillow Gin

– Geometric Classic Cape Dry Gin

– Ginologist Spice Gin

– Harmony Aloe Ferox Gin

– Indlovu Gin – Elephant Dung Gin

– Jin Gin Olive & Honey and Jin Gin Tomato & Sweet Piquante Pepper gins

– Knut Hansen Dry Gin – a South African version of the German original

– Lieben Sailor Lemon & Lime Gin

– Magalies Lavender Gin

– Monks Medella Blueberry Infused and Monks Mary Jane Hemp Infused gins

– Nuy Legacy and Nuy Mastery gins

– Old N1 African Dry and Old N1 Fijnbos Fields gins

– Old Packhouse Moringa Gin

– Pienaar & Son Empire and Pienaar & Son Orient gins

– Smiths Elderflower Dry and Smiths Spiced Dry gins

– Wild Rose Fynbos Gin


The gins were blind tasted by an expert panel of judges with in-depth knowledge of the drinks industry:

– Roger Jorgensen – the father of South African gin

– Dr. Anna Trapido – wine and spirits judge and food anthropologist

– Thierry Lubala – mixologist at South Africa’s largest gin bar at Asara Estate

– Jean Buckham – owner of The Gin Box, a craft gin club showcasing different SA craft gins

– Hanneli van der Merwe – oenologist and co-owner of Barker & Quin Mixers

– Tammy Frazer – perfumer and owner of Frazer Parfum

Commenting on the awards, Roger Jorgensen said, “South African gin distillers are superb when they ace it as they develop their own style and techniques. Given the plethora of wonderful botanicals here, it is no wonder that the Cape is the new Gin Capital of the world.”

On the future of the gin industry in South Africa he added, “the future is bright and SA can be a global player, it has only just begun. Gin has been around for a long time and due to its versatile nature will not disappear overnight.”

“Checkers LiquorShop is proud to partner with the inaugural SA Craft Gin Awards to highlight and celebrate South Africa’s diverse range of world-class gins,” said Jean Marais, Business Manager for Checkers LiquorShop.

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Inaugural awards crown South Africa 's best craft gins

22 AUG 2019 BY: LAUREN HARTZENBERG


South Africa's vibrant craft gin industry was on show at the first South African Craft Gin Awards, held at the Belmond Mount Nelson Hotel on Wednesday evening. With product quality that rivals the world's biggest liquor brands and packaging design to match, the inaugural event acknowledged and celebrated the finest craft gins the country has to offer.

The competition, presented by Checkers LiquorShop, is the largest gin competition in the country and the only dedicated competition for craft gin distillers in South Africa. Last night's awards ceremony drew a gathering of distillers, gin connoisseurs, media, retail buyers and representatives from the hospitality industry. As we circled the tasting room at the event, the various producers spoke of their unique journeys to gin, from backgrounds in winemaking to architecture, law and copywriting. For them, gin distilling presented an opportunity to create something they love and build a business from it. Take A Mari Gin, for example, inspired by the owners' love of the ocean and distilled using ocean water and coastal botanicals. Distilleries that were represented are scattered across the country, from the Cradle of Humankind, to Mossel Bay, Hartbeespoort and the Cape Town CBD. Ingredients used in the production process are equally diverse. Indlovu Gin is created with botanicals that are selectively foraged by elephants, then extracted and cleansed from their dung for infusion - an idea that sprang to mind while on a family safari. Monk's Mary Jane, meanwhile, is the first South African gin to be infused with hemp, while the company's original product, Mysterium, is infused with Africa’s ‘miracle herb’ buchu and Sceletium, a natural mood enhancer sometimes referred to as the ‘pathway to the gods’. Celebrity gin brands Jin Gin, owned by J'Something, and The Finery Gin, owned by Jeannie D, were also showcased and both scooped awards on the evening. From the 110 gins entered into the competition from over 50 distilleries, 26 locally distilled craft gins were awarded the highest accolade of Double Gold. Double Gold award winners • A Mari Atlantic Ocean and A Mari Indian Ocean gins • Copper Republic African Dry and Copper Republic Rooibos & Grapefruit gins • Die Dröe Rooinek Dry Gin • Flowstone Bushwillow Gin • Geometric Classic Cape Dry Gin • Ginologist Spice Gin • Harmony Aloe Ferox Gin • Indlovu Gin - Elephant Dung Gin • Jin Gin Olive & Honey and Jin Gin Tomato & Sweet Piquante Pepper gins • Knut Hansen Dry Gin - a South African version of the German original • Lieben Sailor Lemon & Lime Gin • Magalies Lavender Gin • Monks Medella Blueberry Infused and Monks Mary Jane Hemp Infused gins • Nuy Legacy and Nuy Mastery gins • Old N1 African Dry and Old N1 Fijnbos Fields gins • Old Packhouse Moringa Gin • Pienaar & Son Empire and Pienaar & Son Orient gins • Smiths Elderflower Dry and Smiths Spiced Dry gins • Wild Rose Fynbos Gin The gins were blind-tasted by an expert panel of judges, including Roger Jorgensen, the father of South African gin; Dr Anna Trapido , wine and spirits judge and food anthropologist; Thierry Lubala, mixologist at South Africa’s largest gin bar at Asara Estate; Jean Buckham, owner of The Gin Box, a craft gin club showcasing different SA craft gins; Hanneli van der Merwe, oenologist and co-owner of Barker & Quin Mixers; and Tammy Frazer, perfumer and owner of Frazer Parfum. The best spirits and liqueurs available in South Africa The awards winners for the inaugural Old Mutual Trophy Spirits Show were announced at a ceremony held in Sandton on 31 July... 1 AUG 2019 Commenting on the awards, Jorgensen said: “South African gin distillers are superb when they ace it as they develop their own style and techniques. Given the plethora of wonderful botanicals here it is no wonder that the Cape is the new Gin Capital of the world.” “The future is bright and SA can be a global player, it has only just begun. Gin has been around for a long time and due to its versatile nature will not disappear overnight," he added.

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SA Craft Gin Awards - The Results


The results of the inaugural South African Craft Gin Awards, presented by Checkers LiquorShop, were announced at the Belmond Mount Nelson Hotel on 21 August 2019, acknowledging and celebrating the finest craft gins that our country has to offer.

Twenty-six locally distilled craft gins received the highest accolade of Double Gold awards from an entry of 110 gins from over 50 distilleries all over South Africa.

The Double Gold award-winning gins are:

  • A Mari Atlantic Ocean and A Mari Indian Ocean gins

  • Copper Republic African Dry and Copper Republic Rooibos & Grapefruit gins

  • Die Dröe Rooinek Dry Gin

  • Flowstone Bushwillow Gin

  • Geometric Classic Cape Dry Gin

  • Ginologist Spice Gin

  • Harmony Aloe Ferox Gin

  • Indlovu Gin – Elephant Dung Gin

  • Jin Gin Olive & Honey and Jin Gin Tomato & Sweet Piquante Pepper gins

  • Knut Hansen Dry Gin – a South African version of the German original

  • Lieben Sailor Lemon & Lime Gin

  • Magalies Lavender Gin

  • Monks Medella Blueberry Infused and Monks Mary Jane Hemp Infused gins

  • Nuy Legacy and Nuy Mastery gins

  • Old N1 African Dry and Old N1 Fijnbos Fields gins

  • Old Packhouse Moringa Gin

  • Pienaar & Son Empire and Pienaar & Son Orient gins

  • Smiths Elderflower Dry and Smiths Spiced Dry gins

  • Wild Rose Fynbos Gin

The Single Gold award-winning gins are:

  • Benguela Diamonds Gin

  • Blind Tiger Gin

  • Cape Fynbos Gin

  • Caspyn West Coast Dry Gin

  • Clifton Pure and Rare Cape Gin

  • Clifton Rare Cape Lavender

  • Darlington Gin

  • Deep South Distillery – Cape Dry Gin

  • Die Mas Kalahari Dry Gin

  • Distillery 031 D’Urban Dry Gin

  • Durban Barrel aged Gin

  • Finery Grapefruit Gin

  • Flowstone Wild Cucumber

  • Ginologist Citrus Gin

  • Ginsala Spice Gin

  • Ginsmith Navy Gin

  • Harmony Honeybush Gin

  • Jorgensen’s Fynbos Hibiscus Gin

  • Kintsugi Gin

  • L-Gin Crush Gin

  • L-Gin Plush Gin

  • La Saison Gin

  • Lieben Tinker Gin

  • Magalies Classic Gin

  • Mirari Celebration Goldflake Gin

  • Monks Mysterium Fynbos Gin

  • Musgrave Gin

  • Muti Gin

  • Old Packhouse Crystal Gin

  • Old Packhouse Mandarin Gin

  • Phantom Gin

  • Smiths Citrus Dry

  • Still 33 Flivver Rooibos Gin

  • Sugarbird Cape Fynbos Gin

  • The Tempest Gin

  • Unit 43 Gin – The Prospector

  • Westcliff Oak Aged Ruby Grapefruit

  • Wilderer Double Delight Gin

  • Wilderer Fynbos


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