Three leading lights of the Australian food and drinks scene are uniting to create a new award honoring excellence in Australian liquids. The inaugural Drink Easy Award will have good time brewers, distillers, and fermenters of beer, cider, wine, and spirits, in addition to – in an Australian first – non-alcoholic drinks.
Organizers encompass Duncan Welgemoed, chef and co-owner of Adelaide’s envelope-pushing Africola; Mike Bennie, co-founding father of P&V Wine & Liquor Merchants, beverages journalist, presenter and co-founder of Rootstock; and Tamrah Petruzzelli, liquids media expert, and director of the innovative organization, Super Assembly. As properly as attracting some of the maximum innovative names inside the commercial enterprise to decide the awards, the crew has also partnered with Broadsheet to assist deliver the event to life.
“Drink Easy will be the biggest and most comprehensive guide for booze in Australia,” says Welgemoed. “Partnering with Broadsheet approach we are able to deliver the award – and every producer involved – to the loads like no-one else.”
Nick Shelton, a publisher of Broadsheet, says the trio constitute the exceptional the enterprise has to provide. “We’re so excited to be partnering on Drink Easy,” he says. “It’s an award that reflects the way humans are genuinely developing and drinking in Australia proper now. It’s approximately creativity, pleasant and expertise, however a maximum of all it’s about deliciousness, irrespective of what fashion or category of beverage its miles. Drink Easy can have a substantial impact and we’re thrilled to be a part of it.”
Beverage awards are many and varied. The key distinction with Drink Easy, says Bennie, is that it provides context to the technical brilliance maximum awards hinge on. “[Other awards use] very medical judging conditions, far far away from how purchasers revel in the products being judged,” says Bennie. “We desired to create a better manner of judging [that’s] now not [solely] primarily based on technocratic, current, technological know-how-based totally strategies. For instance, a few merchandises may be extra drinkable than they’re complex, and we’ll also reward variety and fashion.”
Drink Easy judges will look for drinkability, character, and complexity in liquids. Products can also be judged inside “style organizations”, in place of in traditional groupings consisting of grape range. In every other departure from maximum mainstream wine competitions, Drink Easy judges may be paid and had been decided on for his or her “innate understanding” in their respective beverage cultures. The judges encompass Liam Pereira, a beer and cider educator and licensed cicerone (beer sommelier) who’ll head up the beer and cider class, and Emma Farrelly (from Perth’s State Buildings), an award-prevailing sommelier who’ll oversee the wine submissions.
Anyone within the enterprise is welcome to go into, along with non-traditional producers – along with the ones making natural wine, wild-fermented beer, and unfiltered spirits – who might not fare as well in widespread competitions. “Our tiers of understanding embrace all diversities of styles to be had in the marketplace,” says Bennie.
That includes non-alcoholic liquids, that have long been not noted at Australian beverage competitions. “This is honestly critical to me,” Bennie says. He factors to drinks together with kombucha and pioneering manufacturers which include the Queensland-based totally, Aboriginal-owned non-alcoholic craft beer agency Sobah as top candidates for enterprise reputation.
Participants gained’t just acquire kudos, however lengthy-lasting, tremendous advantages for his or her emblem, says Bennie. There’ll never be a final, grand winner, and each player will acquire the sort of comprehensive remarks that are frequently lacking in different competitions.
“Most wine and spirit indicates in Australia don’t provide comments on every unmarried product in a coherent and designated way,” says Bennie. “In partnership with Broadsheet, we’ll help provide a matrix of statistics that consumers can get right of entry to permanently, to be able to allow them to discover the first-rate drinks for his or her taste.”
Submissions open on June three. Once judging concludes, the awards will take place over a sequence of ceremonies in November at some point of Australia, inclusive of landmark ceremonies for the first-class in each category in each capital town.