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Medal Winners at Richmond Wine Society

by | Sep 17, 2015 | Richmond Wine Society | 0 comments

At Richmond Wine Society on Tuesday and Wednesday nights we tasted our way through some wines that for me, defined what the annual wine awards are about.

Wine Award logosWM Top 50 Logos 2014 AW




It’s easy to see these awards as the industry trying to drum up some hype, but my experience over the last few years has been that the Gold Medal and Trophy winners demonstrate a consistent theme:  beautifully balanced wines, fruit, alcohol, oak and tannin in harmony, and at a range of price points that makes them accessible to everyone.

I haven’t judged at the awards myself, but I know they are demanding events with judges having to sample and judge hundreds of wines in a day.  As a wine moves through its panels of judges, and approaches the possibility of a medal or trophy, it is judged by increasingly qualified and (sometimes) famous wine experts.  That such lovely wines emerge from such an immense logistical exercise is a credit to the organisers.  I particularly like the flexibility – if a wine deserves a trophy, then a trophy will be created to reward it!  But that trophy won’t necessarily be awarded in subsequent years, and nor will the same number of Gold Medals be awarded every year.

For me, the star of the International Wine Challenge winners that we tasted was the Tasmanian Tolpuddle Pinot Noir 2013, a superb example of pinot grown in perfect conditions which won a trophy.  Chateau Laville 2011, a Sauternes that I think offers great value,  also won an IWC trophy, and was my favourite Gold Medal winner from the Decanter World Wine Awards.  The 2014 ‘Terrapieno’ Pinot Grigio from Alpha Zeta in the Veneto was the star of the Sommelier Wine Awards – a glorious wine that proves pinot grigio is capable of great things without a silly price point.  And I can still taste the 2012 Cuatro Pasos Mencia (an indigenous Spanish variety from Bierzo) which we enjoyed with the Britannia’s beef borguignon.  The winner of the Wine Merchants Awards Great Value Trophy.

All these wines are available in the shop.


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“Throughout the 17 years I have attended Tim’s wine tasting events, he has continued to deliver his extensive knowledge of wine and wine-making with great charm, and lots of humour, making the evenings not only informative, but also great fun. In the course of an average year, the tastings cover a kaleidoscope of different wine themes – interesting and entertaining for all, novices and experts alike. And the wines taste pretty good too!”

“We have been going to Teddington Wine Society events for a number of years. Tim runs the evenings with bonhomie and humour and wears his considerable knowledge lightly. The evenings are great fun, the wines are always a little bit different and help to expand knowledge and tasting horizons.”

“I have attended the Richmond Wine society for over ten years and always enjoyed Tim’s self-effacing style and gentle humour. His knowledge is globally eclectic and presented in a clear, interesting and always stimulating way. Every guest I have taken there has enjoyed the evening immensely. Tim also offers a wide range of wines to buy and my red cellar has provided great pleasure to my own dinner guests.”

“I’ve been enjoying Tim’s tastings for over 20 years – he is a great teacher, raconteur and wine expert. He is seriously passionate about his wine, but there is nothing serious about his tastings, which are always informal and relaxed. A lovely way to spend an evening and enjoy some fantastic wines.”

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