France tops medal chart at International Wine Challenge, but Australia and New Zealand are hot on its heels
France holds tight at the top of the leader board with 295 medal winners
- France tops total medal count with 295 wines receiving gongs.
- Champagne proves to be the biggest jewel in France’s winemaking crown, producing seven Gold medal winners.
No stranger to success, France topped the medal chart once again at Tranche One of the 2016 International Wine Challenge (IWC), winning a whopping 295 medals, building on last year’s medal count of 277.
However, France is facing stiff competition from rivals Australia and New Zealand. In a competition first, Australia received the most Gold medals with 19, beating France to joint second place with New Zealand for their haul of 18 Gold medals each. Despite Australia’s challenge to France’s throne, French winemakers still clocked up the highest number of Silver and Bronze medals with 108 and 170 respectively.
- Champagne is once again France’s most successful wine producing region at the IWC, claiming seven Gold medals at the prestigious competition. Oudinot earned a pair of Gold medals for its Marks & Spencer champagnes.
- Its Marks & Spencer Oudinot Brut Vintage 2007 and its non-vintage Marks & Spencer Oudinot Rosé both scooped Gold.
- Three more non-vintage champagnes also struck Gold at the competition, proving you don’t need to pay a vintage price tag to get beautiful bubbly. Champagne De Venoge’s Princes Rosé NV, Champagne Gonet Sulcova’s Grand Cru Extra Brut NV and Lanson Noble Cuvée Brut Rosé NV all won Gold at Tranche One of the tasting. Champagne J. De Telmont’s Cuvée O.R 1735 2004 also scooped a Gold medal, as did Champagne Jacquart’s Blanc de Blancs Millésimé Brut 2009.
- Cooperative wine producer Cave de Roquebrun received more Gold medals than any other French vineyard, picking up four top prizes. Among these, three of the producer’s red wines impressed the IWC judges and struck Gold, the Les Fiefs d’Aupenac 2013, the Eclats de Schistes 2013 and the Col de Lairole 2014. Cave de Roquebrun also produced a Gold medal winning white wine with its Grand Canal 2014. The producer also received four Silver medals and three Bronze.
- Alsace based producer Wolfberger also scored highly, picking up a pair of Gold medals for its Gewurztraminer Grand Cru Kirchberg de Barr 2014 and Gewurztraminer Vendanges Tardives 2012. The world-famed producer also received five Silver medals and six Bronze medals in this round of the competition.
- A trio of wines produced in Burgundy also received Gold medals. Labouré-Roi Gevrey Chambertin La Futaille 2013 struck Gold, as did the Auvigue Pouilly-Fuissé Le Clos 2014. The Union Des Viticulteurs De Chablis created the Morrisons Signature Chablis 1er Cru 2013, which also received a Gold medal.
- Elsewhere, in the Loire Valley, Fournier Pere et Fils produced a Gold medal winner for Tesco with Tesco finest* Sancerre 2014 showing that exquisite French wines are readily available in UK supermarkets.
- Visit the IWC website for the full list of winners: http://www.internationalwinechallenge.com
Charles Metcalfe, Co-Chairman of the IWC commented:
“Yet again, French winemakers have demonstrated their prowess across different styles in this tranche of the competition. France may have lost out to Australia in the Gold medal count, but the country’s producers are unbeatable in terms of variety, producing more medal winners in more styles than anywhere else in the world. Australia is hot on its heels though, and this latest result makes me very excited to see what happens in tranche two of the competition in April next year.”