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Wine Of The Year Competition 2010 Results
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English & Welsh Wine Of The Year Competition 2010 - Results Announced: Record High For Medals

This year’s English & Welsh Wine of the Year Competition results are announced today, with more medals awarded than ever before, acknowledging the consistently high quality of wines and winemaking coming from the UK.

Medals were awarded across the style categories by a judging panel of five Masters of Wine, chaired by Susan McCraith MW. The results reveal the quality of the 2009 vintage, shown particularly in the dry white and still rosé categories. As ever the sparkling wines impressed judges with their consistent quality.

A record number of entries from England and Wales were recorded, acknowledging the larger harvest of last year but also including some new wines and vineyards.

The category that stood out most for the judges was the still rosé section, where 6 Gold medals were awarded (none were gained in the 2009 competition). The hard fought trophy for this category – the Waitrose Rosé Trophy - was won by Camel Valley Fortnum & Mason Rosé 2009. This is the second successive year for Camel Valley in winning this popular award and the third time overall. An additional trophy was awarded from this category – that of for Best Unchaptalised Wine - won by Wickham Vineyard for their Row Ash Rosé NV.

Still dry white wines were a strong category, with the varietal Bacchus taking the lead on the medal board, gaining all but one of the 6 Gold medals, as well as the Trophy for best commercial production from the previous vintage – awarded to Chapel Down Bacchus 2009. The other Gold was awarded to a single varietal Madeleine Angevine, produced by Stanlake Park Wine Estate.

Within the oaked white wine category, all entries gained a medal, with the trophy for best oaked white wine awarded to Wickham Special Reserve Fumé 2009.

Red wines showed great promise this year with more medals awarded in both the Pinot Noir and other varietal categories. This year’s Red Wine Trophy was awarded to Plumpton College’s Sutherland’s Block 2009 Pinot Noir.

The Sparkling wine category proved to be as competitive as ever, with a higher number of Gold medals over last year. Wines from non classic varietal performed well alongside the classic varietal sparklers, and sparkling rosés upheld their strong performance.

The star of the show in the competition is the Gore-Browne Trophy – The Wine of the Year – which was awarded for the second year in a row to Ridgeview Wine Estate, this year for their Grosvenor Blanc de Blancs 2001, bottled in magnums. The wine also scooped the trophy for Best Sparkling Wine.

Another significant accolade in the competition is the McAlpine Trophy for Winemaker of the Year, awarded for a second time to Sam Lindo of Camel Valley, who first won the title in 2007.

One notable trophy in the competition, the Montagu Trophy, acknowledges a key part of any wine producing business, that of packaging and presentation. For the first time this year, this trophy has been additionally sponsored by Avery Denison, the world’s largest manufacturer of food and drink label materials. After much deliberation the trophy was awarded to Ridgeview’s Grosvenor 2001 Blanc de Blancs (magnums) – not only for the quality of design in the foil and labelling but also for its presentation in hand crafted wooded boxes, adding to the prestige of the wine and reflecting the wine estate’s identity.

There was a triumph for the dessert wine category, with a Gold medal awarded to Eglantine’s North Star 2006, produced from 100% Madeline Angevine, adding to its already impressive Gold medal gained in France in Vinalies earlier this year.

“As a panel we were all very impressed with the quality of this year’s entries,” commented Susan McCraith MW. “We were delighted to award a record number of Gold medals across all the categories. The still rosé category was the highest quality we’ve seen - truly world-class, and the red categories were the best we’ve ever tasted. The dry white wines impressed us greatly, and showed that the aromatic qualities of the grape varieties grown – particularly Bacchus – are a highly successful style here in the UK. There were some real stars in the sparkling wine categories to rival some of the best in the world. My congratulations to all entrants and winners. There is a lot to be proud about.”

Acknowledging the organisation behind the scenes of the competition, Susan added: “I’d like to personally thank Brian Shirley, Chairman of the South West Vineyards Association, and his team for putting on such a well run tasting for us in Shaftesbury. There were a lot of wines to deal with and the two days of judging went very smoothly. I would also like to thank all my fellow judges for their time and effort over the competition.”

The competition is organised by the United Kingdom Vineyards Association (UKVA). Commenting on this year’s results Sian Liwicki, General Secretary of the UKVA, added: “We were delighted to see such a large number of entries, from long established vineyards and some new names on the UK wine scene too. The large number of awards reflects the quality of our industry’s wines and our growing confidence. My thanks on behalf of the UKVA go to the judges for the expertise and professionalism that they brought to the judging – we are thrilled with the results.”

The official awards ceremony for the competition will take place later in July at the House of Lords, hosted by the President of the United Kingdom Vineyards Association, Lord Montagu of Beaulieu.

Trophy winners for 2009:
The Gore-Browne Trophy
The Wine of the Year
Ridgeview Grosvenor Blanc de Blancs 2001 (magnum)
Winemaker: Michael and Simon Roberts

The Jack Ward Memorial Salver
Best large production wine from the previous year (2009)
Chapel Down Bacchus 2009
Winemaker: Owen Elias

The Wine Guild Trophy
Best wine from any other year (NOT 2009)
(NB: this trophy relates normally to large production (over 1,500l),
although in the case of sweet wines this applies to 500l or more)
Eglantine North Star 2006
Winemaker: Tony Skuriat

The President’s Trophy
Best small production wine (<1,500 litres)
Plumpton College Sutherland’s Block Pinot Noir 2009
Winemaker: Peter Morgan

The Dudley Quirk Memorial Trophy
Best large production wine (over 10,000 litres)
Sharpham Estate Selection 2009
Winemaker: Duncan Schwab

The Vintners’ Trophy
Best sparkling wine
Ridgeview Grosvenor Blanc de Blancs 2001 (magnum)
Winemaker: Michael and Simon Roberts

The Bernard Theobald Trophy
Best red wine
Plumpton College Sutherland’s Block Pinot Noir 2009
Winemaker: Peter Morgan

The McNie Trophy
Best oaked white wine
Wickham Special Release Fumé 2009
Winemaker: William Biddulph

The McAlpine Winemaker of the Year Trophy
Sam Lindo
Camel Valley Vineyard

The Montagu Trophy (sponsored by Avery Dennison)
The best presented wine
Ridgeview Grosvenor Blanc de Blancs 2001 (magnum)

The Tom Day Trophy
Best single varietal wine
Eglantine North Star 2006
Winemaker: Tony Skuriat

The Waitrose Rosé Trophy
Best still rosé wine
Camel Valley Fortnum & Mason Rosé 2009
Winemaker: Sam Lindo

The Berwick Trophy
Best large production unchaptalised still wine
Wickham Row Ash Rosé NV
Winemaker: William Biddulph

26 Gold medals
65 Silver medals
92 Bronze medals
23 Highly Commended were awarded
231 entries

The judging panel were: Susan McCraith MW, Patricia Stefanowicz MW, Maggie
McNie MW, David Bird MW and Julian Brind MW.
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