Judging Procedures

Entry submission processing and storage occurs in a climate-controlled facility, ensuring all entries arrive to judges in the best possible condition.

Judging Panel Composition

Asia Wine Awards judging is conducted by panels of four qualified tasters, chosen from the most-experienced and well-trained palates in the wine and beverage industry.

Each panel includes a trained Panel Director from AWA team to facilitate the judging flow and record-keeping.
In addition, one judge on each panel is designated as the Panel Chair, acting as liaison with the Panel Director and maintaining records.
Each judging panel is assembled with a mix of disciplines including judges with specialist skills and those with a global perspective so that multiple viewpoints will be considered in the evaluation of the entries submitted.
AWA has judges from around the world, they are experts in the fields of wine and spirit tasting and evaluation, including Master Sommeliers, Masters of Wine, Certified Wine Educators, enologists, wine and spirits writers, professors, beverage directors and sommeliers, buyers for on-and-off-premise retailers, and other influencers within the wine and beverage industries.
Mixed juries to guarantee a range of opinions.
Samples are not tasted by professionals alone, because let’s not forget that most future buyers are amateurs!
We have decided to mix knowledgeable amateurs and professionals in the field at each table, so producers are guaranteed a range of opinions from tasters.

Evaluation Methods

Medals are awarded on a merit basis by a majority vote amongst the panel judges.

The judges taste wines individually. They know the region, style, but they don’t know who produced the wine or the brand name. They then compare notes on the wine and reach a consensus on each wine’s medal.
Medal categories correspond to the 100-point scoring system used by AWA and many top wine critics around the world.
If there is a significant difference amongst the judges’ votes, panelists are encouraged to reach a consensus.
Judges are asked to evaluate the entries in silence until all panel members have finished their evaluation.
Judge votes are recorded by the Panel Director and approved by the Panel Chair.

Wines are judged on their own individual merits. That means it is entirely possible for several wines to receive a Seal of Approval or to be awarded a Bronze, Silver, Gold or Grand Gold medal in one session. Similarly, another session may yield fewer medals.

The judges are instructed to grant no awards when, in their opinion, the entries do not meet the criteria for award.

Wine Categorization

Wines are categorized for judging by country or state, category type, (Varietal Red, Sparkling, White Traditional Method or Fortified Red Blend), appellation, price, then wine type (Cabernet Sauvignon, Brut or Vintage Port).

The tasting order of entries after categorization is set in the following order: 1) panel; 2) category; 3) residual sugar; and 4) alcohol.
Large categories are randomly split by the database so that no panel is asked to taste more than 60 wines in the same category.
When there are fewer than three entries per category, the wines may be moved to another appropriate category in order to offer the best opportunity to the entries.
Any placement in, or removal from, a category will be at the discretion of the judging chairman.
Judging by vintage, price, region, etc. will be at the discretion of the judging chairman.
Residual sugar must be listed in grams/liter.

Wines entered in categories defined by residual sugar must list the residual sugar on the entry form.

Flawed Bottles

If the judges are faced with an obviously flawed bottle no more than one additional bottle of the same entry will be opened and tasted.

Results Authenticity

All judging is conducted as a blind tasting.

Entries are presented to judges in coded glasses with a random number identifier corresponding to the judges’ paperwork.
Judges are given the category name, official appellation, grape type or blend, and vintage in order to accurately assess each wine.
No bottles are visible to judges at any time until the entire competition is completed.
Staff members are instructed to avoid discussing ANY wine and spirit brand names whether or not entered into the competition.
Following the competition, judges receive a copy of the code sheets of the wines and spirits they judged with awards noted so they are able to compare competition records with their notes from the judging.

The decision of the judges is final and no changes are made to awards once the judging panel has completed judging.

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