Judging criteria

After decades tasting ginger beers and mixing cocktails, our panel has a unique sense for the qualities that go into a great ginger beer. On a semi-regular basis, our judges gather to sample new discoveries and reassess a few previously evaluated ginger beers.

The judging process is simple. Each ginger beer is sampled on its own and then mixed into a Dark ‘n Stormy to determine if any new flavor notes are revealed when combined with the drink’s other ingredients – Gosling’s Dark Rum and lime. Then, each judge scores the ginger beer between 50–100—a rating system that matches the most common wine scoring systems, with criteria based on flavor, the balance between spice/sweet, bouquet and finish. The scores are then averaged to attain an overall rating for each ginger beer.

Below is our general guide to scoring.

  • 90 to 100
    Buy it, steal it, do whatever you can because this ginger is worth your hard earned dollars or the prison time.
  • 80 to 89
    A damn good ginger beer. Makes a mighty fine cocktail.
  • 70 to 79
    It’ll do the job, can be whipped into a decent cocktail.
  • 60 to 69
    In a pinch, these slightly underwhelming gingers will do the trick
  • 50 to 59
    Stay away, far away from these. Our expert panel has done the legwork so you don’t have to suffer.