What are the best wines in the world? According to the well-respected British Decanter magazine, they are the top-scoring wines from the Decanter World Wine Awards (DWWA) whose results were revealed earlier this month.
18,095 wines were tasted from 56 countries, but only 50 were awarded the prestigious Best in Show Medal.
Andrew Jefford, a DWWA Co-Chair, Decanter editor, and award-winning author, said, “DWWA is the world’s leading wine competition. I’m absolutely thrilled to take part in it every year because having tasted in a number of other competitions I know how well it’s organized, how carefully everything is done. We get entries from every corner of the wine world, so it is as it were the closest you can get to a universal benchmark.”
France regularly dominates the Best in Show; this year it was the leader again with 15 wins. Italy was awarded seven medals, Portugal three, Australia two, and England, Argentina, Chile, South Africa, Germany, and Canada one Best in Show. It was the Hidden Bench 2018 Felseck Vineyard Chardonnay, Beamsville Bench from Ontario’s Niagara Peninsula, which was awarded 97 points!
When it comes to Gold Medals, BC was awarded ten Golds while Ontario received five. Syrah was the most popular BC Gold Medal winner with Poplar Grove 2018 Syrah, Red Rooster Rare Bird Series 2018 Syrah, and Tightrope 2018 Syrah.
The next varietal that won Gold was Cabernet Franc from Mission Hill Family Estate Terroir Collection 2019 Vista’s Edge Cabernet Franc and Harper’s Trail 2019 Thadd Springs Vineyard Cabernet Franc.
The other BC Gold winners were Meyer 2018 Micro Cuvee Old Main Road Vineyard Chardonnay, Burrowing Owl 2016 Meritage, Black Hills 2018 Carmenere, and Little Engine 2018 Pinot Noir.
58 BC Wines won Silver Medals. Mission Hill led the pack with 5 Silvers, followed by Tinhorn Creek winning four, and Painted Rock receiving 3 Silver Medals. Stag’s Hollow in Okanagan Falls received two Silver Medals for their 2017 Renaissance Merlot and 2018 Syrah.
There were 82 Bronze Medals awarded to BC wines. I was pleased to see that one of our pioneer wineries, Gray Monk won nine medals including the varietal they first planted in our province back in the 1980’s, Pinot Gris with their the Gray Monk 2019 Odyssey Pinot Gris.
While Bronze Medals may not have the same prestige as Best in Class or Platinum or Gold, the chance that you can find Bronze winners still available in stores is far greater than winners from higher categories. First of all there are more winners in the Bronze category, and the wineries usually produce more of these wines. And the prices are almost always much cheaper.
There are some Bronze Medal wineries, which I haven’t tried any of their wines before. Frind Estate Winery has been off my radar until now. This winery on the beach in West Kelowna won six Bronzes including The Premier, a red blend with six varietals and the Frind Sparkling Brut.
I’m pleased to see that Road 13 in Oliver showed very well winning five Bronze Medals including their 5th Element. Richmond’s Lulu Island Winery earned one Bronze with their Riesling-Chardonnay Icewine. And Summerhill Pyramid Winery earned three Bronzes including their Heritage Series Marechal Foch and Ehrenfelser, two tasty varietals I wrote about in June. Many wine drinkers aren’t aware of Foch and Ehrenfelser. Pity! . And Fort Berens up in Lillooet was awarded two Bronze Medals for their Reserve Riesling and their Reserve Cabernet Franc.
Stag’s Hollow in Okanagan Falls earned three Bronze Medals for their 2018 Renaissance Syrah and Pinot Noir, as well as their 2019 Albarino, which I’ve enjoyed several times this year.
To discover all the medal winners from the 2021 Decanter WWA visit its website.