WineGB Award wins reflect quality of 2018 "dream harvest"
More than two-thirds of the 122 medal-winning still wines from the WineGB Awards 2019 came from last year’s “dream harvest”.
A total of 254 wines were submitted for the 2019 competition and 216 of these won medals. The awards, which are run by industry body Wines of Great Britain (WineGB) were judged by a "stellar line up" of 12 judges, headed up by Susie Barrie MW and Oz Clarke and the judging took place at the Institute of Masters of Wine in London.
Of the medal winners, English and Welsh sparking wines won 26 Golds, 29 Silvers and 39 Bronzes while still wines took 13 Golds, 24 Silvers and 85 Bronzes.
Within the still wines Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Bacchus were the top-performing varieties but others showing their quality credentials are Orion and Pinot Gris, which took Gold medals. Gamay, Chasselas and Sauvignon Blanc also won medals, alongside the more cool climate still varieties grown in the UK.
A quarter of all medals were won by South West producers, including six Golds. The South East (Kent, Sussex and Surrey) took just under 50% of the medals.
Susie Barrie MW, chair of judges, said: “What was wonderful to see this year was the number of still wines entered into the WineGB Awards on the back of the superb 2018 vintage. We all know how great the UK’s finest sparkling wines are, but the still wines this year were the best we’ve tasted.
"It’s also terrific to see brand new names amongst the medal and trophy winners, as well as wines from such a broad range of counties. I know I’ve said it before, but the wines entered into the WineGB Awards get better every year and all of our hard-working producers should feel so proud of what they are doing to put the UK on the global wine map.”
Oz Clarke, co-chair of Judges, said: “As a long-time believer in English and Welsh wines, I am really proud to be involved in these national wine awards. We set the bar very high and all the medals – bronze, silver and gold – every medal counts and is hard-earned and well-deserved.
"Every single wine entered was evaluated and discussed by experienced judges from all walks of the wine trade and we take our roles very seriously indeed. There are no ‘consolation prizes’ in this competition and the outside world should know that any medal achieved in the WineGB Awards is a resounding endorsement for that wine and an impressive achievement.”
The Trophies, to be announced on July 23, include 13 class trophies, plus the top winners: Best Still, Best Sparkling and Surpreme Champion.
The Awards are sponsored by Waitrose and Rankin Brothers & Sons, supplier of closures.