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We seek to improve the quality of distilled spirits worldwide by promoting world-class distillers and their spirits to the global beverage community. NOSC provides participants with valuable, unbiased, third-party feedback on the quality and process of their spirits.


Managing Partner

In his 14 years at American Distilling Institute, Faulkner coordinated the curriculum for hands-on distilling workshops, having a guiding hand in the establishment of hundreds of craft distilleries and working with key figures in the craft distilling resurgence. Faulkner revived the Judging of Craft Spirits, bringing entries up from 29 whiskies, to more than 1,000 spirits of all classes, establishing the standard of excellence for spirits competitions and writing the judging protocols that would be replicated by numerous other competitions. 

Faulkner has been quoted as an authority on distilled spirits by numerous publications and has appeared on CNN Business. He is a regular contributor to Artisan Spirit, American Whiskey, Gin and Whisky magazines. The first installment in his series “Under the Radar” about emerging distilleries debuted on the Whisky web site in February. 

He has also edited numerous books on the distillation process and opening a craft distillery for White Mule Press. As managing editor, Faulkner grew Distiller magazine from a 64-page print annual of 1,000 copies to a 220-page quarterly magazine with a press run of 7,000, and launched the online version. As vice president at ADI, Faulkner helped plan an annual Craft Distilling Conference and Vendor Expo with 1,900 attendees, presiding as master of ceremonies over the keynote presentations and annual awards gala.

Faulkner is the recipient of ADI’s 2020 Lifetime Achievement Award for Service to the Distilling Community. 



Head Judge

Wayne Curtis is head judge of the New Orleans Spirits Competition and has been a cocktail and spirits writer for nearly two decades. He’s the author of “And a Bottle of Rum: A History of the New World in Ten Cocktails,”  a comprehensive history of the new world’s spirit, first published in 2006 and updated and republished in 2018. He was spirits and cocktails columnist for The Atlantic magazine for eight years, wrote a spirits columnist for The Daily Beast for three years, and is currently a drinks columnist with both Imbibe and Garden & Gun magazines. 

Curtis has contributed stories about the culture, science, and history of drink to The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, American Scholar, American Archeology, Wired, Spirited, Distilled and many other publications. He was named Best Cocktail and Spirits Writer at the 2017 Tales of the Cocktail Spirited Awards and won a second Spirited award for his spirits writing in 2021. He’s visited more than 100 distilleries and has served as a judge for the American Craft Spirits Association, American Distilling Institute, the Barleycorn Awards, among others. He’s a co-founder of the New Orleans Spirits Competition and lives in New Orleans mostly, and Maine otherwise.


Director of Operations

Matt Share is the director of operations at the New Orleans Spirits Competition and has always been in hospitality. He grew up in bakeries and kitchens, he worked for various resorts and restaurants until he started a catering company in the mid-2000s. Going back to culinary school during the crash of 2008, he fell in with winemakers and distillers and was seduced away from food by the booze industry to be an intern at the 2009 American Distilling Institute annual conference. From there, he was a steward in their Craft Spirits Competition and helped proctor their hands-on classes at various distilleries until 2013. He was tapped to helm the fledgling judging program for the American Craft Spirits Association’s inaugural competition in 2014 and helped codify the rules they use to this day.
He returned to the ADI in 2015, and was their whiskey steward until 2022 before taking the operations lead for the New Orleans Spirits Competition in partnership with Tales of the Cocktail. He also has a background in wine, having worked in the California and Oregon wine trades since 2008, and is currently also a brand consultant specializing in after-market wine, cellars, highly allocated products, and retail modernization in Portland, OR.

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Tales of the Cocktail Foundation is a non-profit organization that educates, advances and supports the global hospitality industry and creates lasting impact in our host communities. Tales of the Cocktail Foundation is the global leader in spirits education and a platform to tackle issues facing the industry. The pillars of the Foundation are to Educate, Advance and Support the hospitality industry through programs that benefit individuals and organizations in the community and to make a lasting impact in communities that host our events.

About: What I Do
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