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The only rosé in the world to win a gold medal at this year’s International Wine Challenge is from England.
The medal winners were revealed today (May 17) at the London International Wine Fair, with Denbies Wine Estate Chalk Ridge Rosé 2010 (rrp £11.99) awarded the prestigious accolade.
English wines also had more reasons to celebrate after the royal wedding favourite Chapel Down was awarded a gold medal for its sparkling Rosé Vintage Reserve Brut NV (rrp £24.99).
A record 48 countries entered this year’s competition (a 13% increase year on year), with 5117 medals awarded overall – 406 were gold (a 19% increase on 2010), 1687 were silvers and 3,024 bronze. There was a further 3,655 commended wines.
The top three gold medal-winning nations for 2011 were reigning champions France with 98, Australia with 61 and Portugal with 42. France topped the medal board overall with a total of 1,932 medals, while Australia was second (1,070) and Italy third (979).
Wales celebrated its first silver medal for its Parva Farm Vineyard, Tintern Parva Bacchus 2009 (rrp £9.50) and Brazil won its first gold medal for Gran Legado Brut Champenoise NV.
Japanese sake and wine enjoyed an outstanding year with a record 31 gold medals being awarded, an increase of 121% year on year.
Celebrity medal successes included golfing legend Ernie Els scooping silver for his Cabernet Sauvignon 2009, French actor Gerard Depardieu winning silver for Château Pérenne 2008 and former England Cricketer Ian Botham’s Geoff Merrill Shiraz Grenache Mourvedre 2007, achieving a commended.
The UK’s supermarkets performed well with their own-label wines, particularly the sparkling ranges. Tesco lead the way with 86 medals overall including two golds for their own label wines, while Marks & Spencer received 3 golds with 61 medals, Sainsbury’s 57 and Asda with 56 medals.
IWC event director Chris Ashton said: “This is the world’s most scrupulously judged wine competition and essential to the reputation and success of the IWC is the quality and experience of its judges. Their international reputation and expertise together with the competition’s unique format is a combination that guarantees each medal winner is truly deserving of their accolade.”
The winning wines were each tasted by panels drawn from over 400 experienced judges including many Masters of Wine. Hong Kong’s Debra Meiburg MW as the 2011’s international guest co-chairman joined the panel of co-chairmen – Tim Atkin MW, Sam Harrop MW, Charles Metcalfe, Derek Smedley MW and Oz Clarke.
The IWC’s trophy winners, selected from the gold medal-winning wines, will be announced in June.
Story by Laura Clark
Courtesy of Harpers Wine and Spirit Trades Review