The Beverage Testing Institute was founded in 1981 by former Chicago Tribune and Washington Post columnist Craig Goldwyn. Forming his company independent of any winery's influence, Goldwyn wanted to establish a firm free to evaluate various wines on the basis of their merits, eventually providing the consumer with unbiased recommendations on which wines to drink now, which to stock for later, and which to avoid (and/or use as engine degreasers).
Later the company expanded its scope to include beer and spirits and today the Beverage Testing Institute is the host of three prestigious competitions: the World Wine Championships, the World Beer Championships, and the World Spirits Championships (originally the World Whiskey Championships).
The company prides itself in its "fair and impartial...reviews for consumers;" BTI buying guides routinely appear in such publications as Wine Enthusiast, Restaurant Hospitality, The New Yorker Magazine, Wine & Spirits, International Wine Review, Epicurious, and All About Beer.
BTI also maintains an online guide to wine, beer, and spirits at Tastings.com and publishes a quarterly subscription wine journal called Tastings.
The Beverage Testing Institute is located in Chicago, Illinois.