CONTEST #7310156


Reinvent Your Spirit! Challenge



The most awarded name in vodka over the last 10 years*, SMIRNOFF is once again looking to change the game by infusing excitement and fun into their awarded vodka.  The REINVENT YOUR SPIRIT! contest is YOUR chance to play a part in helping Smirnoff to create those exhilarating moments for your friends, family and people everywhere who like vodka.  For everybody.


As America’s Number One Vodka, the SMIRNOFF brand traces its heritage back to 19th century Russia.  SMIRNOFF has always been known for quality and is enjoyed responsibly in 130 countries around the world.


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NineSigma, representing Diageo North America, Inc., invites participants to submit proposals for novel methods and mechanisms to achieve a multisensory alcohol ‘shot’ experience in vodka. 


This project is focused on ways to bring a ‘wow’ factor to an ordinary shot of vodka. Multisensory effects such as layered drinks, color changes, sound, texture elements, mouth sensations, and dynamic visual effects are just some examples of what Diageo is looking for. Approaches that enable a phase change or a property modification are of interest.


Effects can be achieved through product additives or ingredients, mixers, coatings, or packaging materials. However, the desired effects must be realized in the liquid pour or shot, not simply in a packaging or peripheral manifestation.  


Diageo, maker of brands such as Smirnoff, Don Julio, and Tanqueray, is seeking ways for consumers to bring a professional bar experience home with their liquor purchase. Please refer to the Challenge Summary for more details.  




Up to five (5) finalists will be selected as $5,000 cash prize winners and advance to Phase 2 of the Competition in which finalists will have the opportunity to design a prototype and present their demonstration via videoconference to a Diageo technical and business development review panel. One winner from this demonstration will receive an additional $25,000 cash prize.








Submissions will be evaluated using the following Submission Evaluation Criteria. Proposed solutions must:


  • Enable a unique way to experience a vodka shot through multisensory effects such as taste and sight, taste and texture, sound and sight, etc.
    • Single sensory effects, such as a new (single) color or a novel vodka flavor, are not of interest to this contest.
  • Demonstrate the desired effects within the liquid product:
    • vodka-based spirit (does not need to fit TTB regulations for Vodka)
    • 15% – 50% alcohol component
    • Realize the effect in each single 1.5oz shot of vodka that can be poured from the same bottle
  • Effects that are not manifested through the liquid component are not of interest to this contest (i.e. packaging effects, LEDs or other decorations, etc.); however, functional packaging adaptations may be used to support the liquid effect
  • Be compatible with GRAS standards
    • Any approaches that require a component to be added to the liquid must be safe for human consumption
  • Be applicable to at-home alcohol consumption (i.e. not designed for retail/bartender end users)
    • The shot effect once poured must be created through the liquid (or liquid + packaging), and without using anything beyond common household items and shaking/pouring/stirring to create a simple ritual
  • Be applicable to multiple servings of alcohol vs. a one-time or single pour effect.
  • Potentially make use of various activation mechanisms such as shaking, pouring, heating in the mouth, etc. to achieve desired sensory effects.

See Official Rules for details. Must submit at least one entry by 5:00pm Eastern Time on September 26, 2017 to be eligible.  Must be 21 years of age or older at time of entry to participate.  No purchase necessary. Void where prohibited.  








Pam Semanik




Pam Semanik
Program Manager 

NineSigma, Inc.

Welcome to our Innovation Challenge!


Questions?  Feel free to post a thread for the community or email us at





Dennis Brooks, Ph.D.
VP Commercial Science, Innovation R&D       

Diageo North America, Inc.


Olivia McNeal

VP Innovation R&D, Americas

Diageo North America, Inc.



Heather Mendoza

Senior Manager, Innovation R&D

Diageo North America, Inc.