25 July 2019
The top winners in the WineGB Awards 2019 were announced on 23 July, when the industry came together at Vintners’ Hall, the spiritual home of the UK wine trade, to celebrate of the outstanding achievements in this year’s national competition.
The resounding winner was Langham Wine Estate in Dorset, which scooped four trophies including Top Sparkling and the highest accolade in the competition, the coveted Supreme Champion trophy for its Blanc de Blancs Reserve NV.
We are not only thrilled to be bringing some of these trophies back to Dorset for a third time, but also honoured to be recognised in these industry-leading awards amongst some really top-quality competition.”
Producers of all sizes, new and long-established, attended the event, together with sponsoring suppliers to the industry, press and notable guests.
The ebullient Peter Richards MW was MC for the day, with Head of Judges, Susie Barrie MW and Co-Chair, Oz Clarke presenting the trophies and reinforcing their excitement over the number and quality of wins in the competition. Last year’s high-quality vintage shone through with the high number of medals gained by the still wines.
On the day the UK’s new Prime Minister was announced, a passionate Oz Clarke gave a rousing speech to the guests:
“Whether we are supporters of ‘Remain’ or ‘Leave’, we need to have things to be proud of in Britain and the Great British Wine Movement is definitely one of them… We can start dreaming in a way we couldn’t dream before, of something very special happening in the fields of Kent, Sussex, Hampshire and all over the UK. We feel so privileged to judge English and Welsh wines at such a special time.”
A total of 19 Trophies were unveiled (see full list below). More categories were included this year, illustrating the top-quality wines across the style range in this year’s competition.
Two new trophies were introduced to recognize the ever-expanding industry: Best Boutique Winery (won by Sutton Ridge Vineyard in Somerset) and Newcomer of the Year (Roebuck Estates in Sussex).
Different parts of the country were recognised this year; Kent scooped the highest number (seven) with four trophies won by Chapel Down and Gusbourne taking three. Dorset won four trophies – all from Langham Wine Estate – as did Sussex, with the Thames Valley scooping three.
A further new accolade was announced by Simon Robinson, Chairman of WineGB – the first Lifetime Achievement Award was presented to Chris Foss, recently retired Head of Wine Studies at Plumpton College, who founded the department 31 years ago. The enthusiastic applause from the audience signified the high regard in which he is held, with many of the award-winning producers present having been trained under his tutelage.
Simon Robinson, Chairman of WineGB, commented:
“We are very proud of these, our national Awards. They are meticulously organised, and the judging is led by a very strong and professional team from the wine trade to seal the high quality in which any awards are regarded. A medal in this competition is high accolade indeed – to win a trophy represents the pinnacle of success. My congratulations to all our winners this year.”
The 2019 competition was sponsored by two main partners – Waitrose & Partners, a long-standing champion of English and Welsh wines and Rankin Brothers & Sons, a leading manufacturer and supplier of bottle closures to the winemakers of England and Wales. Several suppliers to the industry and trade outlets, all proactive promoters of the industry, also sponsored the range of trophies. See details below.
All the trophy-winning wines will be available to taste at WineGB’s Annual Trade & Press Tasting on Wednesday 4th September. To find out more, visit https://www.winegb.co.uk/trade/trade-tasting/
Notes to editors
Full copy of all trophy and medal winners available here
WineGB Awards Presentation booklet available here
A selection of photographs taken on the day will shortly be available – please contact WineGB (see details below).
Supreme Champion winners Langham Wine Estate:
L-R: Oz Clarke (Co-Chair, WineGB Awards), Caroline Gitsham (Langham Wine Estate), Simon Painter (NFU Mutual – Trophy Sponsors and WineGB Industry Partner), Justin Langham (Langham Wine Estate), Colin Campbell (NFU Mutual), Susie Barrie MW (Co-Chair, WineGB Awards)
Credit: WineGB /Tom Gold Photography
About the WineGB Awards
The WineGB Awards is the UK wine industry’s national competition designed to showcase the distinctive styles of sparkling and still wines produced in the UK. The Awards are run by the industry body, Wines of Great Britain, in association with sponsors, Waitrose & Partners www.waitrosecellar.com and Rankin Brothers & Co www.rankincork.co.uk
This year, 254 wines were entered from England and Wales; 39 gold, 53 silver and 124 bronze medals were awarded.
About the Judges and the judging process
A stellar line up of twelve judges, headed up by Susie Barrie MW and Oz Clarke, were carefully chosen to represent different spheres of the wine world, from wine buying and selling in retail, wholesale and the on-trade as well as communication. Each has extensive experience in competition judging and professional knowledge of English and Welsh wines. All the wines were judged to international standards of marking. See full list of judges below.
Susie Barrie MW (Chair of Judges), Oz Clarke (Co-Chair), Sam Caporn MW, Sue Daniels, Nik Darlington, Simon Field MW, Richard Hemming MW, Matthieu Longuère MS, Christine Parkinson, Jane Parkinson, Pierpaolo Petrassi MW, Philip Tuck MW
For PR/media information:
Julia Trustram Eve, WineGB
Tel: 01858 467792
Website: www.winegb.co.uk; Twitter: @Wine_GB; Instagram: @winegb
For technical info on the competition:
Belinda Mercer (Competition Manager)
Tel: 07545 662424