Saúde! Portuguese sweep up at the International Wine Challenge 2016, receiving 643 medals
Portugal continued to prove its winemaking prowess, picking up 643 medals at the 2016 International Wine Challenge. The country finished an impressive third in the Gold medal charts, with a haul of 64 Gold medals, beaten only by France and Australia. In addition to its Golden haul, the nation’s winemakers also received 238 Silver and 341 Bronze medals.
- Portugal’s signature fortified wines, Port and Madeira, were most successful at the competition, securing 49 of the Gold medals awarded to the country.
- Port took 42 of those Golden gongs, with slightly more Golds given to tawny ports than to red ports, and two Golds to white ports. The stand-out producer was Sogevinus, which owns the Cálem, Kopke, Barros and Burmester brands. Sogevinus achieved ten Gold medals, eight Silvers and three Bronzes in a remarkable show of quality.
- Three other producers struck Gold including Gran Cruz Porto, which was awarded two Gold medals for its Porto Cruz Colheita 1992 and its Porto Cruz Vintage 2011. C. Da Silva and Barão de Vilar finished the competition with a Gold medal each.
- There were two standout white ports at this year’s competition. Sogrape’s Porto Ferreira White 10 Years Old impressed the judges, as did the Sogevinus’s Kopke Colheita White 1935, the oldest Gold medal-winning Portuguese entry.
- Further success for fortified wines came from Madeira. Henriques & Henriques had an excellent year, with five Gold medals awarded, including its Medium Rich Single Harvest 1998 and its 50 Year Old Tinta Negra Rich, both made with the Tinta Negra grape. Three further Gold medals were awarded to its fortified wines, the 20 Year Old Verdelho, the Single Harvest Boal 2000 and the 20-year-old Malvasia.
- Portugal’s still wine producers also performed well, with eleven Gold medals being awarded to red wines and four to white wines. All but one of the red Golds came from the Douro, including one pure Touriga Nacional, Quinta do Passadouro Touriga Nacional 2013, The only non-Douro red Gold was a Portuguese supermarket own-label, the Vinho Regional Alentejano Selecção Reserva Tinto Pingoe 2014, from the Alentejo.
- Four Portuguese white wines also received Gold medals, with three made from the Alvarinho grape. Anselmo Mendes Contacto 2015, Casa De Vila Verde Pluma Alvarinho Reserva 2014 and Provam Portal Do Fidalgo 2014 were Alvarinhos that all scored Golds. The other white Gold medal was awarded to a blended white made with Loureiro and Trajadura, the Quinta de Curvos Curvos Superior 2015.
- Visit the IWC website for the full list of winners: http://www.internationalwinechallenge.com
Charles Metcalfe, Co-Chairman of the IWC commented:
“Ports and Madeiras continue to dominate the Portugal Gold medal table. And this year we saw more wonderful tawny ports, both aged blends and single vintage Colheitas. This is a style of port that is wonderful, served chilled, in the summer, and shows that port can be enjoyed all year round. The non-fortified Golds were really dominated by reds from the Douro valley, also the home of port. And we had three white Golds made from the grape the Portuguese call Alvarinho, and the Spanish Albariño. Portugal is a winemaking country steeped in history and heritage, and has a great winemaking future ahead.”
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