Nyetimber 2010 Claassic Cuvee has been crowned Best English Sparkling Wine at the Awards Dinner of the 2015 Champagne & Sparkling Wine World Championships. The wine was one of 11 international sparkling wines unveiled as National Champions by competition founder Tom Stevenson and fellow judge Essi Avellan MW at Vintners’ Hall in London, in front of over 100 international winemakers, producers and guests. England was the third most successful country in medal terms, with 13 Gold and 11 Silver medals awarded.
In addition, there were seven ‘Best in Class’ categories for England, with five producers recognised for their achievements:
English Blanc de Noirs – Chapel Down 2009 Blanc de Noirs Brut
English Future Release – Bolney Wine Estate 2009 Blanc de Blancs Brut (Magnum)
English Rosé – Camel Valley 2012 Pinot Noir (Rosé) Brut
English NV Blanc de Blancs – Coates & Seely NV Blanc de Blancs Brut
English Vintage Blanc de Blancs – Nyetimber 2009 Blanc de Blancs Brut
English Vintage Blend – Nyetimber 2010 Classic Cuvée Brut
Best Value English Sparkling Wine – Coates & Seely NV Blanc de Blancs Brut
Before presenting Nyetimber with their award for Best English Sparkling, Tom Stevenson made the following comments: “Twenty years ago English wine was a joke. Now it is a world class sparkling wine. This country has very quickly developed a high reputation and, dare I say, an even higher price for its top quality sparkling wines, but it should be understood that this reputation has been built by a relatively small number of exceedingly high quality producers. There are many more who cling on to their coat-tails, but over time they will be fall off.
Only the marketplace can decide how much any wine is worth and some simply are not worth the asking price. It is interesting to note that almost all of the most successful English sparkling wine producers have started up after the Nyetimber phenomenon. Most of the old, established names have fallen by the wayside, unless they have ripped out their vines and started afresh. Most new ventures have started from the ground up and with new ventures in the pipeline, the next 10 years will see even more new kids on the block. Twenty years ago there was hardly any Chardonnay, Pinot Noir or Meunier vines planted in the UK. Ten years ago there still wasn’t much. Now, though, almost half the vineyards in this country are planted with this classic trio.
With 13 Gold medals and 11 Silvers, England was the third most successful sparkling wine country in this year’s Champagne and Sparkling Wine World Championships. If English sparkling wine can build a world class reputation and achieve the competitive success to match it on such young vineyards and with very little reserve wine, imagine what might be achieved as the vineyards mature and producers build up their reserves.”
The CSWWC is the most respected, comprehensive and rigorous international sparkling wine competition in the world. It is the first and only terroir-driven competition judged exclusively by renowned fizz experts, all of whom taste each and every wine submitted to guarantee an unprecedented level of consistency and accuracy of judging. Founded by Tom Stevenson in 2014, with the support and expertise of Essi Avellan MW and Dr Tony Jordan, the CSWWC provides both consumers and trade with the definitive annual guide to the best Champagnes and sparkling wines on the planet.
Commenting on the overall results for 2015, Stevenson says: “With 113 new producers, a 38% increase in the number of countries represented and 36% more Gold and Silver medal-winning wines this year, we can truly say that the CSWWC 2015 has been welcomed and embraced by every significant terroir for sparkling wine production!
“This increase in both diversity and quality has doubled the number of Best in Class awards this year, which is a good thing because it draws attention to the high standard of sparkling wine around the world, but it presented us with a problem. It would have resulted in so many Champion trophies by Style that those trophies would have been devalued. We therefore made National trophies our highest and most prestigious awards in 2015, with the single illustrious exception of the Supreme World Champion. Next year it is very likely that we shall see the return of World Champions by Style, but they will be reduced to a select few to ensure that the exclusivity of our top awards is retained.”
The 11 outstanding National Champions were chosen from over 100 Best in Class sparkling wines, with Champagne Roederer’s Cristal Rosé 2004 named Supreme World Champion. The full results are available and will be published with full tasting notes and price categories for each wine in Tom Stevenson’s Champagne & Sparkling Wine Guide 2016 (due to be published in October 2015).