Supermarket Success at World’s Wine Oscars

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UK Supermarkets have triumphed at the world’s most rigorously judged independent wine competition as the winners were announced in London last night. The International Wine Challenge Awards were presented by Co-Chairmen and leading wine experts Charles Metcalfe and Tim Atkin MW.

Led by Tesco, the International Wine Challenge (IWC) Supermarket of the Year Award winner, supermarkets stood out from the competition by collecting nearly a quarter (9) of the 41 Awards.  This 50% increase over last year (6 in 2011) includes Marks & Spencer’s win in the Great Value Rosé category for Le Froglet Rosé 2011, Maison Virginie RRP £5.99 and the Own Label Range of the Year.

For the fourth consecutive year, Majestic Wines won High Street Chain of the Year and took the honours as Direct Merchant of the Year. Cambridge Wine Merchants saw off national chains to take the top award, Wine Merchant of the Year.

Charles Metcalfe comments:  “The IWC’s aim is to recognise excellence and help wine drinkers source some of the world’s best wines. The credibility of the IWC logo is testament to the competition’s unrivalled professionalism and meticulous judging processes. IWC medals help to take the risks out of buying wine, and point consumers towards quality wines at all prices and in all styles.”

Demonstrating its understanding of quality wines, Tesco took three Great Value Champion awards for:

  • Tesco Finest Pouilly Fumé, Fournier Père et Fils – Great Value Champion White
  • Tesco Finest Gigondas 2010, Vignobles La Coterie – Great Value Champion Red
  • Tesco Finest Sauternes 2009, Yvon Mau – Great Value Sweet Wine

Sainsbury’s also contributed to supermarket success winning the Fairtrade Award for its Taste the Difference Chenin Blanc 2011, Bosman Family Vineyards.

Thorough systems and scrupulous judging are integral to the success and international credibility of the IWC which is led by a team of world-renowned wine experts working with 400 judges drawn from the wine world.  Each gold medal-winning wine is blind tasted at least three (and up to six) times.

“The IWC is about to celebrate its 30th year and the influence of the competition has never been greater. We have received a record number of entries this year with more countries entering than ever before as more wine producers see the value of an IWC award win.

“The wine drinker is very well served this year with great quality and well-priced wines available nationwide. The International Wine Challenge is very proud of its role in bringing these wines to the attention of wine drinkers,” says Charles Metcalfe.

Other Award highlights:

  • Champion Red Wine: Charmes Chambertin Les Mazoyères Grand Cru 2010, Domaine de la Vougeraie
  • Champion White Wine: Vineyard Select Clare Valley Riesling 2006, Angove Family Winemakers
  • Daniel Thibault Trophy for Champion Sparkling: Champagne Piper Heidsieck Rare Millésime 1998, Champagne Piper Heidsieck
  • Champion Fortified Wine: Harveys Fine Old Amontillado 30 Year Old VORS, Harveys, Jerez
  • Alois Kracher Trophy for Champion Sweet Wine: Royal Tokaji 6 Puttonyos 2007, Royal Tokaji Borászati Zrt
  • Sake Champion: Daiginjo Fukukomachi 2012, National Trading Inc Kimura Brewery
  • Great Value Champion Sparkling: Codorníu Rosado Brut NV, Codorníu
  • Great Value Champion Fortified Wine: Manzanilla Pasada Pastrana, BodegasHidalgo – La Gitana
  • Innovator of the Year: Marks & Spencer
  • James Rogers Trophy for best wine in the first year of production: Marks & Spencer Single Block Series S1 Sauvignon Blanc 2011, Yealands Estate
  • Large Independent Merchant of the Year: Cambridge Wine Merchants
  • Small Independent Merchant of the Year: Bottle Apostle
  • Wine Club of the Year: The Wine Society
  • Sparkling Winemaker of the Year: Régis Camus, Champagnes P & C Heidsieck
  • White Winemaker of the Year: Neil McGuigan,  McGuigan Wines
  • Red Winemaker of the Year: Gérard Bertrand, Gérard Bertrand
  • Sweet Winemaker of the Year: Hans Tschida, Weingut Hans Tschida
  • Fortified Winemaker of the Year: Manuel Lozano, Emilio Lustau

For more information on the IWC and to see a complete list of all the winning wines, please visit

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