Diageo Honors Americaas Leading Spirits, Wine and Beer Distributors at 7th Annual Golden Bar Awards in New York

New York, NY - (July 21, 2010) – Diageo, the world's leading premium spirits, wine and beer company, honored spirits, wine and beer distributors at the Seventh Annual Golden Bar Awards at The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City Monday night.

The Golden Bar Awards, the beverage alcohol industry's equivalent of the Academy Awards, celebrates distributors and brokers from across the United States for their excellence in the marketplace and the important role they play in their communities.

Ivan Menezes, President and CEO of Diageo North America commended Diageo's distributors for their hard work and contributions to a very successful year in the industry, despite a difficult environment, remarking, “Tonight, we honor and applaud the achievements of the best of the best among us. What makes our winners truly spectacular is that they show all of us what we can do when we are at our best – even under challenging conditions.”

Larry Schwartz, Diageo USA President, also commented on the importance of execution in the current market. “Looking at the past year, we have all navigated through the economic challenges together, as a team, and emerged stronger. Tonight is a night to celebrate our combined strengths and absolute resolve, and to reiterate our commitment to this wonderful business.”

The Golden Bar Awards recognize the efforts of distributors and brokers that represent Diageo's spirits, beer and wine brands including Smirnoff, Captain Morgan, Guinness and Beaulieau Vineyard. Awards are also given for Innovation Launches, Control States, Three-Year Consistency, and Distributor of the Year. A special Platinum Bar Award was given for Advancing Responsible Drinking in the spirits, beer and wine categories.

In total 34 statuettes, 32 made with 24 carat gold, and two made with platinum, were awarded to distributors. Each Golden Bar statuette weighs eight pounds, stands more than a foot tall, and is produced by R.S. Owens, the company that created the Oscar(R), presented by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

Below are the categories and winners for the 2010 Golden Bar Awards:

Distributor of the Year - Spirits Wirtz Beverage of Illinois
Distributor of the Year - Wine Atlantic Wine & Spirits, a Division of Empire Merchants, LLC, Metro New York
Distributor of the Year - Beer Premium Distributors of Washington DC

Spirits Excellence Award - Smirnoff Alabama Sales Company, Alabama
Spirits Excellence Award - Johnnie Walker Reliable Churchill of Maryland
Spirits Excellence Award - Jose Cuervo Wirtz Beverage of Illinois
Spirits Excellence Award - Baileys Alliance Beverage of Arizona
Spirits Excellence Award - Captain Morgan Southern Wine & Spirits of Nevada
Spirits Excellence Award - Tanqueray Pinnacle Distributing of Colorado
Spirits Excellence Award - Crown Royal Coastal Wine & Spirits of Florida
Spirits Excellence Award - Ketel One Wirtz Beverage of Illinois
Reserve Brands Execution Award - Spirits Atlantic Wine & Spirits, a Division of Empire Merchants, LLC, Metro New York
Control State Excellence Award - Spirits Southern Wine & Spirits of New Hampshire
Winning at Retail Award - Spirits Coastal Wine & Spirits of Florida
Advancing Responsible Drinking Award – Alliance Beverage of Arizona
Spirits and Wine

Beer Excellence Award - Guinness Amoskeag Beverages, New Hampshire
Beer Excellence Award - Smithwick’s Alliance Beverage of Arizona
Beer Excellence Award - Red Stripe Pacific Beverage, California
Beer Excellence Award - PABs Glazer’s McAllen, Texas
Advancing Responsible Drinking Award - Beer Andrews Distributing of North Texas

Wines Excellence Award - Sterling Vineyards Alliance Beverage of Arizona
Wines Excellence Award - Beaulieu Vineyard Ben Arnold Distributing Company, South Carolina
Wines Excellence Award – Chalone Vineyard Odom-Southern Distributors, Washington
Wines Excellence Award - Acacia Vineyard Glazer’s of Louisiana
Wines Excellence Award - Edna Valley Vineyard Alabama Crown, Alabama
Wines Excellence Award - Rosenblum Cellars Coastal Wine & Spirits of Florida


Innovation Launch Award - Spirits Georgia Crown Distributing, Georgia; Reliable Churchill of Maryland; Washington Wholesale – District of Columbia
Innovation Launch Award - Wine Washington Wholesale – District of Columbia
Innovation Launch Award - Beer J&L Ventures, Georgia


Golden Bar Consistency Award - Spirits Reliable Churchill of Maryland; Washington Wholesale – District of Columbia
Golden Bar Consistency Award - Beer Premium Distributors of Washington DC


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