Sid Patel On Why you should be a part of the London Drinks Competitions

Sid Patel, CEO of Beverage Trade Network and London Competitions explaining the vision of London competitions to judges in its first year.

The London Competitions have become increasingly popular in the global trade over the last few years. Hosted by the Beverage Trade Network, three competitions — London Spirits Competition, London Beer Competition, and London Wine Competition — are held and judged simultaneously. These competitions are international in nature and put the consumer’s point of view central in their understanding of award-winning wine, beer, and spirit. 

What is the vision for these competitions?

When Sid Patel, the founder of Beverage Trade Network was asked about the vision for these competitions, he shared how he saw a clear gap between what our industry loves and what the actual consumers love. The idea behind the launch of the London Drinks Competitions was to make awards more relevant and be closer to the end consumer and the way they reward their wines, spirits and beers. He achieved that by stepping into the shoes of a consumer shopping in a supermarket, as they shop by their eyes first, then the price and then the quality which most of the time is unknown before they taste the product.

Sid (pictured above) started his journey in the drinks business by creating his own wine brand Friday Monkey out of Australia. From this experience, he started his wholesale business in the USA and focused on building his network in the US market.

Beverage Trade Network was created by Sid which is now world’s leading media and trade show company connecting brands with buyers. Beverage Trade Network owns media assets like SommeliersBusiness, BartenderBusiness, On-Trade (new UK drinks magazine), BevRoute, London Drinks Guide, Los Angeles Drinks Guide, Paris Drinks Guide, Chicago Drinks Guide, Mumbai Drinks Guide.

Beverage Trade Network also organizes and owns trade shows like the International Bulk Wine and Spirits Show, San Francisco, London and Shanghai, USA Trade Tasting, Future Drinks Expo and Cannabis Drinks Expo.

What does the “award” look like?

Spirits scoring 65-75 are awarded the Bronze Medal, between 76-89 qualify for the Silver Medal, and scoring above 90 qualify for the Gold Medal and are considered for Special awards. Special awards at the London Spirits Competition are based on categories that include Spirit Of The Year, Vodka Of The Year, Rum Of The Year, Tequila Of The Year, Gin Of The Year, Whisky Of The Year, Distillery Of The Year, Best Spirit By Country, Best Spirit By Quality, Best Spirit By Value, and Best Spirit By Packaging. Special awards at the London Beer Competition are Beer Of The Year, Brewery Of The Year, Best Beer By Country, Best Beer By Quality, Best Beer By Value, and Best Beer By Packaging. Special awards at the London Wine Competition are awarded for Wine of the Year, Winery of the Year, Best in Show by Country, Best in Show by Varietal, Best Wine of The Year by Quality, Best Wine of The Year by Value, and Best Wine of The Year by Package.

What is the judging criteria for the award?

The goal is to help end consumers shop the spirits with confidence and pick the best product by quality, value and package.

An award winner at any of the three London Competition is generally a spirit or beer or wine that is of the highest quality, gives back a great value for money and is packaged in a way that it stands out on the shelves as well as on the back bar. Quality is judged based on Appearance, Aroma, Body, Taste, and Aftertaste. Packaging is scored on the basis of Creative design, label quality, label details, back-bar appeal, store shelf appeal, and functionality (including shape, size, weight, and ease of pouring). The value for money is ascertained based on the quality offered for the price. Essentially,

Q (Quality Score) + Value Score (V) + Package Score (P) = London Spirits Competition Score.

Only real trade buyers are judges of the competition.

How does the award benefit a spirit, beer, or wine?

The awards can help bring credibility to the spirit, instill confidence amongst trade buyers, and allow to explore the scope of development based on the scores provided. While these are the primary benefits, the competition also provides opportunities to network and explore partnerships. Top 100 winners at all of the three London Competitions will be included in the Top 100 On-Premise & Off-Premise spirits list – Top 100 Spirits/Beers/Wines. The results of the awards are also shared with over 50,000+ trade professionals in the Beverage Trade Network community, and over 20000+ buyers in and around the UK.

Here are some of the benefits and reasons why you should enter your Spirits in the London Spirits Competition.

  1. Raise your brands’ profile, prestige, and credibility with importers, distributors, press, retailers, and consumers
  2. Instil confidence in the trade buyer about the marketability of your Spirits as LSC rates Spirits by its value, package, and quality.
  3. Scores Feedback: Get your score breakdown by each criteria
  4. Gives The Consumer A Sense and Stamp Of Approval.
  5. Winners can download digital medals and also order medal stickers.
  6. Get free professional tasting notes and shelf talker templates.
  7. Get medal certificate for your products.
  8. Winners To Get Unparalleled global reach via the BTN network which also includes Bartender Business magazine. See Winning Impact For Further Details.
  9. Winners will be showcased and promoted on BTN’s new UK business drinks magazine – On-Trade. On-Trade focuses on restaurants, bars, pubs and hotels of UK.
  10. Winners to be showcased and promoted on BTN’s new UK consumer drinks magazine – London Drinks Guide.

What is the vision for these competitions?

2022 will be the biggest year for the competition where entrants will get a lot more benefits for the same price. We just launched On-Trade, UK’s new on-premise magazine along with global consumer drinks guides and new features like shelf talkers templates, cocktail stories.

Entrants will now be able to add their cocktails which will help bartenders and consumers connect with brands more globally. We also started our spanish social media accounts and have started an office for South America. The team will promote winners in spanish. Thus, 2022 entrants will surely get a lot of global awareness via our network. My idea is to give more value to our entrants every year and help them grow their business. We are also pushing our branding a lot in trade and consumers via different partnerships which will again help winners.

Enter your wines, beers and spirits before February 28, 2022 and grow your brands globally with Beverage Trade Network’s media network. Please use below links to learn more and how to enter.

The London Competitions have been created exclusively by the Beverage Trade Network, the US drinks events, services, business, and publishing group dedicated to helping drinks producers and brand owners get closer to the buyers, distributors and retailers that can bring their products to market.

London Wine Competition,

London Spirits Competition

London Beer Competition.