Dori Bryant, runs two spirit competi-
tions, Spirits of Mexico and Spirits of
the Americas, for the London-based
International Wine and Spirits Compe-
tition. She says that for any brand, the
price of entry is a minimal investment
that can yield significant and measur-
able results, as a marketing tool and
for sales, and shows consumers that
the company behind the brand has
confidence in their product. “Entering
a competition should be the first step
any brand makes, as the results can be
far-reaching, especially enhancing the
bottom line where it counts the most,”
she says.
at Retail
Another benefit of the competitions
is how medal-winning wines can be
promoted in real space (and even cy-
berspace) via retailers incorporating
the POS tools various competitions
provide, ranging from stickers to digital
medallions to shelf talkers.
Jasper Russo, wine buyer and
director of wine marketing at the 11-
unit Sigel’s Fine Wines and Great
Spirits in the Dallas area and himself
a judge at the Dallas Morning News
Wine Competition, says competition
nods offer something unique. “Awards
appeal to everyone,” he notes, but
says that it also depends on the
competition—the bigger competitions
carry more weight with retailers and
consumers both.
Each year after the Dallas
competition, Russo selects 25 gold
medal winners and features them
just as the competition results are
published in the
Dallas Morning
. The competition has a fanatical
following locally, and the stores fill with
many customers shopping with the list
of published winners in hand. Russo
backs the selected wines with shelf
talkers, stacks on the floor and other
traditional point of sale techniques.
But most important, he says, is the
store and staff making a commitment
to whatever competition they endorse
and promoting the awards beyond
stickers on the shelf.
As Russo points out, it’s crucial
for a competition, no matter how
legitimate, to win over retailers in
order to broaden recognition with both
The Ultimate Beverage Challenge, held
annually at Astor Center in Manhattan,
uses a format that puts wines through
several stages of judging.
Hook into good times and sun-splashed
fun with
Hook’s Spiced Rum
. Smooth yet
exciting, with a hint of cinnamon, clove,
and vanilla,
Hook’s Spiced
is a premium
Caribbean Rum with a rich amber color,
velvety texture, and distinct island flavor.
It’s the perfect start to a perfect party
– day or night.
©2013 Produced and Bottled By Hook’s Rum Import Co.,Weston, MO.
35% alc./vol. (70 PROOF) Drink Responsibly. Drive Responsibly.
Jessica Altieri
judging at the
San Francisco
Chronicle Wine
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