Success Down Under: Australia puts in world-class performance at the International Wine Challenge 2017 with 875 Aussie wines being awarded medals
Australia cemented its position as a world-class wine producer at the 34th International Wine Challenge picking up 122 Gold medals, 395 Silver medals and 358 Bronze medals. Following two weeks of blind tasting by an international panel of experts in London last month, Australia finished second in the medal count, beaten only by winemaking powerhouse, France.
- Competition veteran Wolf Blass Wines had another successful year, with a mighty haul of medals including seven Gold awarded across a range of styles. The lion’s share of medals were awarded to its Shiraz entries including Wolf Blass Original Langhorne Creek Cabernet Shiraz 2013, Wolf Blass Black Label 40th Vintage Cabernet Shiraz 2012 and Wolf Blass Gold Label Barossa Shiraz 2015. The South Australian producer also received a further Gold for its aptly named Wolf Blass Gold Label Riesling 2016.
- Australian Vintage Ltd which producers a number different wine brands was awarded seven Gold medals, six for its white wines and one for its red. Its most famous brand McGuigan received two Gold medals for the 2006 and 2008 vintages of McGuigan Shortlist. A further two Gold medals were awarded to the 2007 and 2009 McGuigan Bin 9000 from New South Wales. Its Tempus Two Copper Zenith Semillon 2004 was the oldest Australian wine to be awarded a Gold medal.
- De Bortoli wines received six Gold medals in this year’s competition. Four of these were awarded for its Botrytis style wines including the 2010 and 2014 vintages of Noble One. A further Gold was awarded to a wine produced on behalf of UK supermarket Marks & Spencer; the Marks & Spencer Hermits Hill Botrytis Semillon 2013. De Bortoli received a further Gold for its Melba Reserve 2013, a red wine produced in the Yarra Valley.
- Southern Australian producer Pinnacle Liquor Group was awarded five Gold medals, three for its Shiraz entries, including Shiraz Mums Block Shiraz 2014, Krondorf Symmetry Shiraz 2013 and Balthazar Shiraz 2013. It earned a further Gold medal for its Black Wattle Icon Cabernet Sauvignon 2013. In the white wine category, it also struck Gold with its Mockingbird Hill Hayshed Block Riesling 2016, showing this producer is no one trick pony.
- No stranger to success at the IWC, Morris Wines picked up four Gold medals for its fortified wines. Two of the Golds were awarded for its Muscat Black Label Muscat Rutherglen Liqueur NV and its Cellar Reserve Muscat NV.
Bright future for sparkling wines
- Whilst the vast majority of Gold medals were awarded to still wines, three Aussie sparkling wines were also awarded Gold medals. Two of the Gold medals were awarded to Chardonnay entries; the first to Bromley by Wolf Blass Pinot Chardonnay Sparkling NV and a second to Brown Brothers Patricia Brut Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, 2010. Jansz Tasmania scored the final Gold for its Premium Vintage Cuvée, 2011.
Peter McCombie, Co-Chairman of the IWC commented:
“Wine producers in Australia have had another fantastic year at the International Wine Challenge. The array of medals awarded are testament to what Australian winemakers are capable of. For years Australia has been at the forefront of the wine industry, producing good-value, high quality wines. In recent years, producers have begun to diversify outside of the Shiraz and Chardonnay wine styles the country is so well known for, and we’ve tasted some excellent examples on the judging table this year.”