Cotton & Reed Wins Platinum Medal for White Rum

Cotton & Reed is thrilled to announce that its White Rum won what it believes to be an unprecedented Platinum Medal at the 2024 San Francisco World Spirits Competition (SFWSC). This is the rarest honor granted by that prestigious competition. No Platinum Medal has ever before been awarded in this category. Cotton & Reed could not find an announcement of any rum previously winning a Platinum medal at SFWSC, though Worthy Park’s Single Estate Reserve may have earned the award in the “Extra Aged Rum” category in 2020.

SFWSC is referred to as “the Oscars of Booze” for good reason. Its judges are the spirits industry equivalent of household names, and its medals carry some weight in the trade. When the dozens of judges tally up their blind tasting scores, spirits with average scores above a certain threshold earn Gold, scores in a lower range earn Silver, and so on. Double Gold winners receive not just a Gold-level average, but a Gold-level score from every single taster. Platinum medal winners are those rare spirits that earn Double Gold for three consecutive years. This means that for three consecutive years, this D.C.-made domestic rum has received exceptional ratings from every single judge that tasted it.

“Consistency is at least as difficult to achieve as quality for a small producer,” said head distiller John Hayes. “Maybe one award means we lucked into making one great batch. Two means we’re really onto something. But a Platinum from San Francisco is more recognition than we could’ve dreamed of.”

In 2022, Cotton & Reed White Rum won Double Gold & Best of Class. In 2023, it took Double Gold again, and was runner up to Ten to One’s Best of Class finish. Now in 2024, it’s become the first-ever White Rum Platinum Medal winner. 

“This unprecedented award couldn’t come at a better time,” said co-founder and CEO Jordan Cotton. “Our incredible team is working harder than ever right now as we are in the process of our first major expansion, taking over a much larger distillery facility in Ivy City. Awards don’t mean everything, but for small distilleries like us who face huge barriers in growing distribution, learning that world-renowned experts think we’re consistently making great spirits is a very welcome recognition that we’re busting our humps over something worthwhile.”

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