BTI is/was more of a Chicago thing. They were paired up for a time with Wine Enthusiast, but that didn't last.
Suppliers - mainly larger volume suppliers whose products are sold in the broad market - utilize ANY good press for shelf talkers, case cards and brochures. It draws consumer attention. But, American consumers gravitate more towards a numerical rating rather than medals. It's easier to comprehend...and (if you're into buying your beverage based on rating) easier to compare with other products.
Even the persuasive power of magazines & critics is fading. This is all a good thing in my view. Trust your palate.
BTw, it's Mat...