Salud! Success for Spain at International Wine Challenge 2018
Under embargo until 11am 10.08.17
Spain has scored an impressive 692 medals at the International Wine Challenge 2018 – including 67 Golds 262 Silver, and 363 Bronze. Of the 67 Gold medals, 44 were for sherry, clearly demonstrating the high quality of wines from the region.
Highlights for Spain included:
A fabulous year for sherry
Spain has had an exemplary year for sherry at IWC 2018 with 44 Gold medals for its producers, up from 35 in 2017. Leading the charge for the Jerez region was Emilio Lustau which achieved an incredible 18 Golds. Gonzalez Byass was not far behind, with nine Gold medals, up from six in 2017. Gonzalez Byass also produced one of the three highest scoring Spanish wines with its Tio Pepe Tres Palmas Fino delivering 97 points. Meanwhile Bodegas Fundador was awarded five Golds for sherry including its Harveys Palo Cortado and Harveys Pedro Ximenez VORS 30 YO. Both of these also scored 97 points.
Two Cava golds
The IWC judges awarded two Gold medals to Cava. Cavas Del Castillo De Perelada, Cava Perelada Stars Brut Nature Reserva 2014 was joined in success by Marques de la Concordia Family of Wines, Federico Paternina Cava Brut 2016. Both scored 96 points.
Vermouth victory – from Mallorca to Catalonia.
Two Vermouths won Gold for Spain. The island of Mallorca provided a Gold medal winner as producer Antonio Nadal, which recently celebrated 120 years of winemaking, scored 95 points with its Vermut Muntaner Blanco
The other to strike Gold was Perucchi Dorado Gran Reserva Vermouth, a red vermouth from Catalonia.
Awards across the regions
A further 19 Gold medals were won by Spanish wines, including 6 for whites and 13 for reds. Established region Rioja provided most of the red success with 7 producers achieving Gold medals. The two highest scoring Riojas were from producer Bodegas Corral: Don Jacobo Gran Reserva 2004 and Altos de Corral Single Estate Reserva 2010.
Also scoring highly for Spanish reds was Finca La Rinconada Viñedos Y Bodegas, Barcolobo El Jaral 2013 – from the Castilla Y Leon region.
Meanwhile, Aragon-based producer Pagos del Moncavo also secured Gold, the only one from this region, for its Prados Privé 2016, a Syrah.
Galicia produced three of Spain’s Gold-winning white wines, Rioja also produced a Gold for white and there was a single Gold for a white wine from Catalonia, detailed further down.
Finally, a Gold was awarded for El Legado de Camacho 2014, a sweet white wine from Tenerife.
Less familiar grapes
A number of less familiar varieties stood out attaining Gold medals. Native to Catalonia is the Sumoll grape which was behind the success of Domènech,Vidal Cultivare Sumoll Samsó 2013, Domènech,Vidal also received a Gold for another unusual single varietal, Xarel-lo, with their Domènech.Vidal Cultivare Xarel.lo 2015.
Elsewhere in Catalonia, the Trepat grape was used by Codorníu Raventós in its La Font Voltada 2015, which scored 95 points and a Gold medal.
Finally, Treixadura was the white grape behind the Gold success of the self-named Finca Viñoa 2016 from Galicia.
Charles Metcalfe, Co-Chair of the IWC commented:
“We are thrilled to see due recognition for Spain for a range of wines including of course its world-class sherry. What is so appealing about the world’s great fortified wines is that each is inextricably linked to a specific and storied locale and it’s wonderful to see the tale of Sherry continue to be told from these traditional frontier towns in the southwest. What’s also fantastic is the range of styles being produced. Quite deservedly sherry is increasingly becoming more recognised in the UK as the incredibly multifaceted, intricate wine that it is, with ample versatility to be served before, during or after a meal.”