At the American Distilling Institute's 7th Annual Judging of Artisan American Spirits, Donner-Peltier Distillers took home a Bronze medal for in the White Rum category for their Rougaroux Sugarshine. On March 4-5, 2013, ADI judged 317 artisan American spirits at Huber Orchard and Winery in Starlight, Indiana: 127 whiskies, 66 gins, 36 moonshines, 47 rums and 41 fruit spirits were submitted from 124 independently-owned, small-batch, distilled spirits producers. Judges awarded 23 gold, 44 silver and 46 bronze medals, again upholding the highest standards by awarding medals to only 37% of participants.
Gold, silver and bronze medals were awarded based on the judges consideration of the spirit's merits, and not on their numerical scores. Best of categories were awarded to the medal-worthy spirits that scored numerically better than other spirits in the same category. The tasting was totally blind and evaluated in terms of Nose, Palate, Finish and Balance. Judges were not allowed to see bottles or know what spirits were submitted until all judging was complete.
|DP's Oryza Vodka|
“We were thrilled when we heard the news”, says Beth Donner, company president. “We always had confidence that we were making great products, but to have an international panel of spirits experts agree is very gratifying.”
The World Spirits Association conducts an annual spring competition each January, which requires submissions of spirits in December. “We were only in business for a month or two when the submission deadline rolled around”, said Donner. “Our hope was that we might receive a medal, maybe two, but to win three medals with three products, and have them all be gold-well, that was really the best surprise I’ve had in quite a while.”
Donner adds that the best is yet to come. The distillery is planning to release two new products onto the market in the next two months: Rougaroux 13 Pennies Praline Rum, and Oryza Gin. Sometime later
this year, the distillery will release LA1, Louisiana’s first whiskey since Prohibition. Donner explains “These products have taken some time to develop, but we think we’ve got them perfected now, so they should really be our best yet.”