Sake expands its reach with more categories and Gold medals at the International Wine Challenge
International Wine Challenge announces 37 Gold Sake Medals for 2014
The 2014 International Wine Challenge, held recently in London, awarded a total of 496 Gold medals across wine and sake categories this year. Entries were received from all over the world including Colombia, Georgia, and China. Each medal wine or sake is tasted on at least three separate occasions by a minimum of ten of the finest wine or sake tasters in the world.
- Highest ever number of entries and highest number of Gold medals awarded
- New categories for Ordinary Sake and Sparkling Sake
- 18 prefectures have won Gold medals – Yamagata and Niigata both leads with five breweries
- This year, the International Wine Challenge Sake competition, sponsored by Japan Airlines, was the biggest ever competition with over 725 sake submitted. 2014 also marked the first step towards a truly international sake competition, with entries from Norway, USA and Canada
- 40 International judges also attended, with the IWC’s unique 50/50 Japanese / Non-Japanese judging panel supported by the Sake Samurai Association in London on the 14 and 15th of April
- 2014 also saw the introduction of two new sake categories – Ordinary Sake (Futsu-shu) and the relatively new phenomenon of Sparkling Sake. Both fared well. Each category was judged independently, so no comparison was made across different categories. Therefore, while the Ordinary Sake was judged on the same criteria as other categories – yeast, rice polish rate and the addition of alcohol – it was not competing against the more premium sake
- In total, the IWC awarded 37 Gold medals across the sake categories: Ordinary Sake: 1; Honjozo: 3; Junmai: 5; Junmai Gingo/Daiginjo: 7; Gingo Daiginjo: 11; Sparkling: 3 and Koshu: 7
Sam Harrop, Co-Chairman of the IWC commented:
“The calibre of sake has been outstanding at this year’s competition. The Gold medal winners are absolutely stunning, and whether you are looking for a bargain in the supermarket aisles or a big name to wow your friends for a special occasion there is a sake for you. It is wonderful to see such quality across all styles of sake.”
“If a consumer sees an IWC medal sticker on a bottle of sake, they can trust the quality of the product, as it has been tasted by some of the finest sake judges in the world,” explained Sam Harrop.
“Whether you are a sake novice or a seasoned expert, our stickers can help you choose great sake every time you shop,” he added.
Visit the IWC website for the full list of winners: www.internationalwinechallenge.com