The judges have voted.

On January 13 and 14, seven judges from all over the United States convened in Portland, Oregon to evaluate 52 entries in the Drunken Tomato Awards. Judges used a standardized judging form created specifically for Bloody Mary reviews. All entries were blind taste tested, and judges did not receive any information about the product manufacturer. Point scores were allocated according to five different areas: Aroma, Appearance, Flavor, Mouth Feel, and Overall Impression. Entries were awarded a score out of 50 points possible. Medals were awarded based on an average of the judges scores for that entry.

Here were the average scores in the “Hot & Spicy” category:

2.8 AROMA  (out of 5)
3.3 APPEARANCE (out of 5)
2.8 MOUTH FEEL (out of 5)
13.6 FLAVOR (out of 25)
5.2 OVERALL IMPRESSION (out of 10)

And how did Portland Bloody Mary Mix do?

3.25 Aroma (“Almost sweet scent; ketchup-like; Spice; nice and tomato-y; Smells like shrimp cocktail”)
4.0 Appearance (“Bright red color with decent pepper suspension; Nice chunky spices… mmmm; Can see all the spices; bright red”)
2.75 Mouth Feel (“Very tangy, watery, acidic, almost no actual heat)
10.50 Flavor (“Ketchup… everywhere… not what I expected; Definitely has a kick; A little sweet and moderately spicy; has a lot of tang; would add more savory notes; After taste has a little spice”)
4.0 Overall Impression (“Very sweet; should be in the mild category; love the tomato taste but should have more balance; needs some smokiness”)

Needless to say I didn’t wow the judges…and maybe I should not have entered the spicy category, as they pointed out. These are “seasoned” judges, and when they expect spice, they expect SPICE! But I did bring home a bronze award. Not too shabby!

Do you agree with the judges’ impressions? If I do a second flavor, would you like to see more spice, more smoke, or more of something else entirely? Leave me a comment in the box below. I’m really interested in what you have to say!