1. On the day of the competition, entrants will be seated at tables before eight pre-poured glasses of malt whisky. Each glass will be on a tasting mat with glass positions labelled 1, 2, etc., up to 8.
2. Upon being seated and at the commencement of the competition, entrants will be supplied with a sheet of paper listing nine malt whiskies. The list of nine whiskies includes the eight whiskies on the table, plus one red herring.
3. Entrants will be supplied with two (2) identical copies of an answer sheet. The YELLOW answer sheet will be collected by the judges at the conclusion of the session. The WHITE answer sheet is to provide Entrants with an opportunity to keep a record of their answers.
4. Entrants must put their name in BLOCK CAPITALS at the top of the answer sheet. Unidentifiable or illegible answer sheets will be disqualified.
5. Entrants will have thirty (30) minutes to assess the eight whiskies and identify which is which. Entrants must nominate their selections on the answer sheet, for example, “Whisky 1 = Highland Park 12yo, Whisky 2 = Glenfarclas 15yo”, etc.
6. Whiskies eligible for use in the Championship must be malt whisky (single malt or blended malt) and can be from any country of origin, e.g. Scotland, Ireland, Australia, etc. However, any whisky to be featured as a competition malt must be widely available to all consumers within Australia and able to be sourced across the country via regular retail outlets. Single cask bottlings or rare, limited edition releases will not be featured in the Championship, nor will whiskies that can only be only be sourced via online specialists/distributors. A list of Competition Whiskies, listing fifty (50) eligible whiskies, will be released to all Entrants via email 72 hours before the Championship. The eight whiskies to be featured on the day of the event, plus the whiskies for the first Taste-Off (if required), must be taken from amongst this list of Competition Whiskies. The whisky for the second Taste-Off (if required) need not come from amongst the list of Competition Whiskies.
7. There shall be no conferring amongst entrants during the competition. The competition is an individual event.
8. Entrants shall not bring to the table any item, chart, book, notes, etc, that may be deemed as assisting them in their task. Mobile / smart phones / PDA’s shall be switched off for the duration of the competition. Any entrant found using such items for the purpose of gaining an advantage shall be disqualified.
9. Still spring water and pipettes will be available, should entrants wish to reduce their whiskies. Spittoons will also be available.
10. At the conclusion of 30 minutes, the MC shall announce “All pens down”. The YELLOW copy of the answer sheet will then be collected for judging. The WHITE copy will remain with the Entrant.
11. The judges will score the answer sheets. Entrants will receive one mark for each correct answer and no mark for each incorrect answer. There will be no penalty (negative) marks for incorrect answers.
12. Upon adding up the scores on all the answer sheets, the top three scoring entrants will be awarded 1st Place, 2nd Place, and 3rd Place respectively.
13. Should there be any tied scores, a taste-off will be used to separate the tied entrants. The taste-off will be in the following format: The tied entrants will be presented with three different whiskies, and will be supplied with a list of six possible whiskies, that is, the three whiskies on the table, plus three red herrings. Entrants will be given five minutes to attempt to identify the three whiskies and fill in the answer sheets. The tied entrants will then be separated by their differing scores.
14. Should there still be any tied competitors after the first taste-off, a second taste-off will be held. The second taste-off will take the following format: Still-tied entrants will be presented with a single (one) whisky and a list of eight (8) possible whiskies. Each still-tied entrant must then list their top eight guesses as to which whisky it is, in order of most likely to least likely. The entrant with the correct answer closest to No. 1 then wins the taste-off. A maximum of three minutes will be allowed for this.
15. Entrants to the Championship and after party must be over the age of 18. The Scotch Malt Whisky Society’s directors, employees and representatives (e.g. State Managers) may enter the competition, except those involved in the organisation on the day and the selection of the competition whiskies.
16. Entry and registration in the competition shall be by full prepayment of the entrance fee. In the event of cancellation more than 30 days prior to the event, the entrance fee is fully refundable; if less than 30 days prior to the event, fees are only refundable if seats can be resold.
17. The judges’ decision is final in all matters and no correspondence shall be entered into. By entering the Competition, Entrants agree to be bound by these Rules.
18. The AMWTC is subject to cancellation up until 15 days prior to the event with full refund on your AMWTC ticket being issued. The Scotch Malt Whisky Society takes no responsibility for any other losses from other expenses (flights, accommodation etc) arising from the cancellation of the event. If cancellation is a distinct possibility, the SMWS will go to every effort to inform members and ticket holders at the earliest opportunity.