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Brussels: Six gold stars for extraordinary brandy known as 'Gazdina rakija'

"Gazdina rakija made out of aprcicot", "Gazdina rakija made out of plum" and "Gazdina rakija made out of pear" produced by fruit processing factory called "Prijedorčanka" has been awarded with gold stars for extraordinary taste by The International Taste & Quality Institute (iTQi).

Apricot was awarded a gold star for excellent flavor, plum with two gold stars for excellent taste, while pear earned three gold stars for exceptional taste that stands out.

"Prijedorčanka" is engaged in processing of fruits, vegetables and berries in four production lines. It is the largest producer of natural distillate fruits and natural brandies in Europe. Annually production and sells to foreign markets is more than 650,000 hectoliters of distillate fruit, which is about 2.5 million bottles of brandy.

The company was founded in 1972 in Prijedor, Bosnia and Herzegovina.

The “Superior Taste Award” is the only stamp of quality in taste granted by food and drink opinion leaders that are Michelin starred Chefs and Sommeliers.

The iTQi jury, regrouping 17 different nationalities, is composed of members of prestigious culinary institutions of Europe such as, the Maîtres Cuisiniers of France, the Académie Culinaire de France, the Academy of Culinary Arts, Euro-Toques, the Federazione Italiana Cuochi, the Nordic Chefs Association, the Federación de Cocineros de España (Facyre), the World Master Chefs Society, the Verband der Köche Deutschlands as well as the Association de la Sommellerie Internationale (ASI) for drinks.

Similarly to the Michelin guide of gastronomy, iTQi does not organize a competition but rewards products on their own merits. Only products having received a mark superior to 70% will be granted a « Superior Taste Award » of one, two or three golden stars.

  • 1 golden star: overall mark in between 70 and 80 % : good taste

  • 2 golden stars: overall mark in between 80 and 90% : remarkable taste

  • 3 golden stars: overall mark equal to or over 90% : exceptional taste

During the tests, each product is subjected to an individual blind tasting according to a rigorous sensory analysis procedure.

The tasters are asked to evaluate the products as if they were having them in their family home, not according to the standards of their restaurants.

Every evaluated product is scrutinized in the shape of a sensory analysis report for which criteria such as olfaction, vision, taste, after taste, texture, etc. are all taken into account by each Jury member. The latter also write comments and, when needed, suggestions for improvements.

After the tasting session, iTQi draws up a detailed graph of the different grades and summarizes the comments and suggestions of the Jury members for the participating companies. This information is truly appreciated by the producers as it helps to better understand the Jury’s opinion and become aware of potential areas of improvement.

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