Northland's Black Collar Distillery has won a round of medals after triumphing at the International Wine and Spirits Competition in London.
The Bay of Islands distillery picked up gold in the vodka category, scoring an impressive 95 out of 100 for its Black Collar Vodka, and seeing off a host of international competitors.
Black Collar was the only New Zealand brand to strike gold in the London event.
The distillery completed a hat-trick of medals when its Black Collar Gin and Black Collar Rum, both making International Wine and Spirits Competition (IWSC) debuts, were awarded bronze in their categories.
"To have all three spirits win a medal in London was brilliant," said Black Collar owner Jonathan Mclean.
"After last year's silver medal at San Francisco, we wanted to tweak our vodka a bit, make it better and win gold. We've done that and we're really happy with the result."
The judges commended the Black Collar Vodka for its "class and elegance".
"The start on the nose is elegant, grassy and clean, with some lime blossom notes. It is fresh and easy to drink and cooling on the palate – a perfectly balanced and very well-polished example," they commented.
The gin and rum were judged to be "perfectly well-made spirits which made for an enjoyable drinking experience".
Black Collar Distillery was launched in October 2017.
Mclean praised the input of regional economic development agency Northland Inc, which has been providing the business with advice and guidance for the past 15 months.
"Northland Inc has been really fantastic for us, providing brilliant insight into how we could improve and backing it up with some excellent contacts in specialist areas where we needed help," he said.
The full Black Collar range, including a new spiced rum, can be purchased at all good liquor stores throughout New Zealand.