Australian Grenache named the world’s best at IWC

May 18, 2022
By Ioni Doherty

Overnight in London, the International Grenache Trophy at this year’s International Wine Challenge was awarded to Endeavour’s Pinnacle Drinks for its The Ethereal One Fleurieu Grenache 2020. It is the first time in IWC history that an Australian wine has won this accolade.

International Wine Challenge Co-chair, Jamie Goode, said, “Globally, Grenache is one of the most widely planted red grape varieties but it has not always been popular in Australia. In recent years, it has experienced a resurgence thanks to winemakers switching their focus towards lighter styles which are becoming increasingly sought after worldwide. It is great to see Australia take the trophy for the first time this year.”

The Australian White Trophy went to Tasmanian producer, with Tolpuddle Vineyard Chardonnay 2020 which also claimed the Australian and Tasmanian Chardonnay Trophies.

Australia was awarded 54 Gold Medals in this year’s competition, coming second only to France. Meanwhile, Tasmania burnished its reputation as one of the nation’s leading wine producing regions with the Australian Sparkling Trophy once again awarded to the House of Arras, for its EJ Carr Late Disgorged 2006. The region has now triumphed in this category for every one of the last ten years.

The Australian trophy winners this year were:

  • International Grenache Trophy, Australian Red Trophy, South Australian Grenache Trophy: Pinnacle Drinks, The Ethereal One Fleurieu Grenache, 2020, South Australia
  • Australian White Trophy, Australian Chardonnay and Tasmanian Chardonnay Trophy: Tolpuddle Vineyard Chardonnay, 2020
  • Australian Sparkling Trophy: House of Arras, EJ Carr Late Disgorged 2006, Tasmania
  • Australian Fortified Trophy: Galway Pipe Fortified 25 Years NV, South Australia
  • South Australian Shiraz Trophy & Eden Valley Shiraz Trophy: Cimicky Estate’s Reserve Eden Valley Shiraz, 2019, South Australia
  • Western Australian Chardonnay Trophy & Great Southern Chardonnay Trophy: Ferngrove Diamond Chardonnay, 2020, Western Australia
  • Barossa Valley Shiraz Trophy: Golden Amrita Single Estate Shiraz, 2020, South Australia
  • Barossa Valley Shiraz Blend Trophy: Saint Petri Shiraz Carignan, 2020, Calabria Family Wines, South Australia
  • Adelaide Hills Pinot Noir Trophy: Sidewood Estate Pinot Noir, 2020, South Australia
  • Margaret River Chardonnay Trophy: Capel Vale’s Black Label Chardonnay, 2021, Western Australia
  • South Australia Chardonnay Trophy: Petaluma Piccadilly Valley Chardonnay, 2021, South Australia

New Zealand reclaimed the International Sauvignon Blanc Trophy this year, with Yealands Estate Single Block S1 Sauvignon Blanc 2021 scooping the prize. New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc shone in this year’s Challenge, winning three of the five Gold Medals that went to wines made from this grape variety. New Zealand was also recognised for its world-class Chardonnay, being awarded the International Chardonnay Trophy for the very first time,a category that has traditionally been dominated by French wines. The top performing wine was the Gimblett Gravels Chardonnay 2020 fromHawke’s Bay producer Trinity Hill Wines.

The esteemed contest saw thousands of wines from over 50 countries judged by an international panel of wine experts in a series of rigorous blind tastings held in London last month. It is the competition’s 39th year and in this year, as in every other, the judges assess every wine ‘blind’ with each wine marked each for its faithfulness to style, region and vintage.  Trophies are awarded to the very best wines in each category. 

The full list of medal and trophy winners in the 2022 International Wine Challenge can be viewed here.

The IWC 2022 Champions, which are selected following a re-tasting of all trophy-winning wines by the IWC Co-Chairs, will be revealed at the IWC 2022 Awards announcement on Thursday, 7 July.

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