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The Council of Whiskey Masters reveals new members

Education body the Council of Whiskey Masters has added new members to its board following its annual examinations in April.

Council of Whiskey Masters
The council named six Masters of Whiskey

Held at the Isle of Raasay distillery in Scotland, the exams took place from 17-21 April, with more than 40 candidates and judges present.

For the 2024 programme, 25 individuals applied and 17 passed the exams.

The new Masters of Scotch are: James Ball; Alessandro Di Berardino; Will Breslaw; Bruce Deng; Mark Griffith; Michael Hitchcock; Ty Kinter; Ai Kuroda; and Andy Westley.

The Masters of Bourbon are Carmen Hartwich and Kevin Malta.

The Masters of Whisky are: Dan Crowell; Adam Edmonsond; Nik Kosobucki; Tom McCormick; Siddharth Sawkar; and Sam Wright.

Master of Whisky is the highest designation awarded by the council. Those given this accolade have previously passed the Scotch or Bourbon Masters exams and are already full council members.

This year was the first time the council has named Masters of Whisky since its inception in 2019.

Everyone who passed the exam is part of the Council of Whiskey Masters.

The examinations consisted of blind tastings, ‘in-depth’ oral theory exams and essays on a ‘wide range of topics’. Candidates are tested on history, production, knowledge of the trade, regulations, tasting competence and more.

This year’s judges comprised an international panel taken from the council’s board: Steve Beal; Dave Broom; Martin Duffy; Sébastien Gavillet; Monique Huston; Charles MacLean; Becky Offringa; Hans Offringa; exam chairs Martin Duffy, Tobias Gorn and Arthur Nägele; chairman of the board Bernhard Schäfer; Masters of Scotch Dan Crowell, Adam Edmonsond, Nik Kosobucki, Siddharth Sawkar, Guy Sporbert, John Wabeck and Sam Wright; and Master of Bourbon Tom McCormick.

The next Masters exams are set to take place in the US in April 2025. Those interested can enrol on the council’s website.

The Council of Whiskey Masters was founded in 2019 and has more than 60 full members worldwide.

Last year the council offered its first global Master of Scotch exam.

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