The highly influential Decanter World Wine Awards (DWWA), which concluded on Sunday, reinforced Spain’s reputation as a “rising force in fine wine,” with the Mediterranean country topping global ranks in five categories.
The Miguel Torres estate won the International Trophy for Red Bordeaux varietals over £15 for its Reserva Real 2010, which is a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc and Merlot. The award is the DWWA’s highest accolade.
Gonzalez estate carried home the International Trophy for Dry Fortified over £15 for its Cuatro Palmas Amontillado wine, while Lan’s Culmen 2010 grabbed the top spot for Red Spanish Varietals over £15.
DWWA’s regional chair for Spain and Sherry, Sarah Jane Evans MW, said that Spain is “the most exciting thing happening in European wine right now.”
Nearly 16,000 wines entered the competitions, and only 35 won an International Trophy, including eight for France, six for Australia, five for South Africa and five for Spain.
The wines were judged by “240 of the world’s best palates, including 85 Masters of Wine and 23 Master Sommeliers.”
"It is not enough for a wine to be excellent, it has to be the best of its kind," said Steven Spurrier, chairman of the DWWA. “Our standards are high, and so are our expectations. We only award medals to wines in which consumers can have the utmost confidence.”
Among the other pleasant surprises in the competition was Bay of Fires‘ Sauvignon Blanc 2014 vintage from Tasmania, which won the International Trophy for Sauvignon Blanc over £15. Slovenia’s Ptujska Klet Pullus brought home the International Trophy for Sweet wine over £15 for its Laski Rizling 2012 vintage.
Notably, UK fine wine merchant Marks & Spencer won the top prize for Chardonnay under £15 for its own brand Macon Villages, Cote Maconnais 2014 vintage.