WELCOME to the Sixth Annual Washington Cup, the first competition of its kind – a competition exclusively for American-made spirits and liqueurs. We seek to offer an opportunity for the best among U.S. distilleries to demonstrate their skills and the excellence of their products on a level playing field. By creating the Washington Cup, our goal is to bring attention to new and established high quality American spirits and liqueurs.

The Washington Cup Spirits Competition is unique: there are two distinct phases to the competition:

The First Round screens products to be passed along to the Second Round. Only one entry fee is required, regardless of the number of rounds in which the brand has succeeded. The fee is the lowest in the industry - $100 per product.

JUDGES’ CHOICE: July 11, 2017. This First Round of tastings is a blind tasting of spirits by category, with the awarding of Gold, Silver and Bronze Medals. They will be judged by experienced and top-flight spirits judges including BAR Master Ryan Maybee (Kansas City), Mendel Kohn (San Francisco), Tyler Hudgens (Washington D.C.), Leo DeGroff (New York), Sean Kenyon (Denver) and others. I will act as the Chief Judge for the competition. The first round of the Washington Cup will identify American spirits and liqueurs among the Medal Winners that we believe to be especially worthy of the public’s attention. These will carry through to the Second Round of the tasting.

BARTENDERS’ CHOICE: August 21, 2017. The Second Round of the Washington Cup is judged by selected bartenders of the Kansas City Chapter of the United States Bartenders Guild. These bartenders have been trained and vetted previously (I can personally attest to their expertise) and each has already gained local acclaim in the Paris of the Plains Bartending Competition, a nine-year-old competition that involves talented mixologists from throughout the United States. These bartenders will receive an unmarked bottle of the spirits that have passed through to this Second Round, and over the course of the day will build cocktails from that spirit. Each bartender will award a score to his or her blind spirit, alongside a group of three professional spirits judges. Again, I will attest to the fairness of this process, as well as the security of the identity of each blind spirit. Based upon these scores, the bartenders and the spirits judges may choose to elevate the medals previously awarded to any of these spirits. The top spirits among these Award Winners will receive the prestigious Washington Cup.

For more information, please email us at

Doug Frost MS, MW
Director, Washington Cup Competition

Copyright © 2012-2017 The Washington Cup Invitational – Kansas City, MO - All Rights Reserved