I am a spirits writer, Editor and consultant specialising in whisky. I have been a drinks writer since 1991, and a whisky writer since 2001. I have written 16 books mainly about whisky, but I have also written about gin, rum and craft beer. My main interest has been in the field of what I term ‘New World Whisky’- whisky made outside the five traditional whisky producing regions. I ran the Wizards of Whisky Awards for 10 years to highlight the best of new whisky producers and in 2021 I launched the free to enter New Wizards Awards to honour new distillers and whiskies, no matter how small they are.
The Wizards are dead…
After 10 wonderful years championing the best of New World whiskies, I’ve decided it’s time to give them a makeover and replace them with something altogether more exciting and different.
The Wizards of Whisky World Whisky Awards achieved what they set out to achieve. They helped whisky lovers discover there was exciting life beyond the five traditional whisky making territories.
With the advice of Time Duckett at Heartwood, Tasmania, I scrapped the second division term ‘Rest of The World’ and replaced it with ‘New World Whisky’; I stopped comparing Indian whiskies with Swedish ones, and Australian whiskies with French ones; and I dispensed with age categories based on Scottish maturation times.
It has been a delight to see the explosion in world whisky in recent years. But now everyone knows that Belgium, Denmark and Taiwan can make whisky, and everyone is trying to run an awards event to take advantage.
So it is time to move on.
Ladies and gentlemen, let me introduce you to:
Dom Roskrow’s New Wizards Awards (The NWAs)
Launched May 1, 2021
Entry open to any producer who considers themselves small and/or independent, including independent bottlers
No entry fees. No costs at all
No limits on number of entries
No judging panel
Entries for the 2022 NWAs will be accepted any time between May 1 to December 31, 2021
Only 10cl to 20cl of liquid required for judging
Awards for distilleries and producers as well as their whiskies
Flexible awards. In addition to the normal awards, innovation, enterprise and initiative will be rewarded. If an award doesn’t exist I’ll make one up (because I can!)
Awards made by me, in consultation with a regional expert when required
All entries will provide editorial for a new online project – see below
A basic website exists at www.newwizards.co.uk
A Facebook and Twitter account are being set up
The New Wizards will be backed by a new e-magazine. This will be called:
Dom Roskrow’s Stills Crazy – celebrating the best of New World Whisky
It will be published every two months on the www.newwizards.co.uk site.
It will feature interviews with entrants to the Awards, unusual and hybrid whisky-based spirits as well as whiskies, reviews of entrants, humorous and anecdotal editorial, and an indulgent rock music page. It will be colourful, brash, fun and funky.
Australian Distillery special
The Legend of Dr Swan
The Stills are Alive
“The First Minister of OZ Whisky, Dom Roskrow… Let us never forget that YOU are the man who first drew my gaze to antipodean potential, and deserve recognition of this fact. Not just for me, but for so many.”
Sam Simmons, Head of Whisky, Atom Brands
“Good to hear that something is rising from the ashes of the Wizards. I think what is different and attractive about what you do, is that it’s not about giving out awards for cash. This is peer review stuff, so hugely important as most distilleries work in a bubble. So feedback and awards from a credible source is fantastic.”
Peter Mulryan, CEO, Blackwater Distillery, Ireland
“We really appreciate all your efforts for the whisky industry as a whole and us in particular.”
Patrick Zuidam, Zuidam Distillery, The Netherlands
“It was you who introduced me to Australian whisky way back in 2013 at the Birmingham Whisky Festival. You were waving g the flag for it and you still are. Your enthusiasm this morning was fantastic to see!”
Dave Worthington, Global Brand Ambassador, That Boutiquey Whisky Company
“Good to hear that because of all of us you are keeping the Wizards in a new version, it will be good to have you leading such a good awards event . You have taken your Awards to a different level, you have gained and maintained the full respect from the craft industry for years now and I am sure I speak for the whole industry when I say that we would love you to keep going. We’re very much looking o welcoming you to our little distillery where the magic of our products come alive every day.”
Monica Zuidam-Tapias, Zuidam Distillery, Netherlands
“Maaaaate!!! You have been along from the beginning. You really get what we’re all about.”
Tim Duckett, Heartwood and Tasmanian Independent Bottlers
I would love to hear your thoughts, criticisms and if you’re a spirits producer I would love to get your samples to review, write about and include in my new free to enter New Wizards Awards.
Please contact me:
Tel: +44 7384 618761
Facebook: Dom Roskrow
Address: 11 Chapel Road, Morley St Botolph, Wymondham, NORFOLK. England NR18 9TF