Official Barrel Aged Gin No.209 Competition Rules, Hints & Tips 2015.

  1. One entry per bar.
  2. Entries must be in the form of a long or short drink.
  3. Entries will be invited by Hi-Spirits based on the bar reaching entrance criteria and agreeing to abide by the rules of the competition.
  4. Entries should be submitted through
  5. Applicants must submit a proposed recipe for a barrel aged gin cocktail and explain why barrel ageing the cocktail will improve by the final result.
  6. Successful applicants will be visited in the bar by a judging panel. The applicant will make and present their proposed cocktail, un aged. If successful you will be provided with a barrel and a period of no less than 4 weeks to barrel age the recipe which was submitted.
  7. At the final each competitor must make their drink in front of the judges to the exact recipe contained within the barrel as well as producing a drink directly from the barrel to demonstrate the benefits of barrel ageing.


  1. 1st Prize for the cocktail competition is a once in a lifetime trip to the Gin No.209 distillery in San Francisco.


  1. Entries must be submitted to no later than 18th May
  2. Successful applicants must make themselves available to be visited by a judging panel between May 25th and the 5th
  3. Successful finalists will be informed no later than Wednesday 10th
  4. The final will be held on the week beginning 13th July at a venue TBC


  1. For the Final cocktail entered must be aged for a minimum of 5 days within the provided barrel and drink may be decanted into an alternative vessel prior to judging.
  2. Recipes must contain a minimum of 30ml (1oz) of Gin No.209
  3. Ingredients may be measured using a jigger or similar measure or freely poured.


  1. Recipe entered must be included within bars cocktail menu for a period of no less than 6 months.
  2. Recipes entered must be expressed in ‘shots’, ounces (US) or millimetres with the use of ‘dashes’ and/or ‘drops’ limited to bitters, hot pepper sauce and the like. Fruit juice quantities must also be stipulated, e.g. “squeeze of lime” is unacceptable.
  3. All recipes to be submitted in writing to your Hi-Spirits rep either prior to the event.

Drinks & Preparation

  1. Barrels will be provided by Hi-Spirits and delivered to winning venues with adequate time to perfect and create recipes prior to the competition.
  2. For the final the drink must be assembled in front of the judges to show technique and ingredients. This will then be compared to the judged cocktail which will be produced from the barrel (or vessel).
  3. Competitors must supply their own bartending utensils (shaker, bar spoon, strainer etc.)
  4. Cocktails may be presented in any shape of glass, cup or other hygienic and safe receptacle. Note, points are awarded for presentation.
  5. Drinks may be served hot (with organiser’s written consent), straight-up, or over cubed, cracked or crushed ice.
  6. For heats and the final each competitor must make at least two identical drinks to show method and technique and two identical drinks from the barrel/vessel for the judges to sample.


  1. By entering this competition, competitors agree to assign copyright of their recipe and drink name to the competition organises. Competitors and drinks presented during the competition may be photographed (still or motion picture) by the organisers and copyright of these images for any use, including advertising, will be retained by the competition organisers.


  1. Competitors are encouraged to talk to the judges while making their drink.
  2. Points will be awarded for general presentation and working methods.


  1. All drinks for the will be judged and scored with the following criteria and weighting:

Total 100 points Presentation of the barrel ageing process and benefits- 20 Knowledge- 20 Technique- 10 Taste- 30 Appearance- 10 Saleability- 10

  1. The competition organisers reserve the right to have the final decision on any matter relating to the judging of the competition.

The competition organisers will appoint the panel of judges and reserve the right to replace or appoint new judges before or during the competition

  1. The judges must remain impartial.
  2. While every reasonable effort will be made, the competition organisers cannot guarantee the safe return of glassware, equipment or any product supplied by a competitor. Therefore competitors are advised to house their tools and product in bags/boxes which enable them to efficiently gather and hold their equipment and ingredients immediately after competing. 


  1. Competitors must conduct themselves in a safe manner and any action considered by the organisers to endanger fellow competitors, judges or spectators will result in instant disqualification and possible ejection from the venue.