Close Menu

France fizzes at IWSC 2015

France regained its position at the head of the medal table and sparkling wine shone as the International Wine & Spirit Competition released its northern hemisphere results.

After losing the top spot to Italy last year, France returned in force in 2015 with a total of 802 medals, including 15 Gold Outstanding awards and 20 Golds. These included a Gold Outstanding medal for Sainsbury’s £12 Taste the Difference Pouilly-Fuissé 2014.

Both France and Italy contributed to a particularly strong performance from sparkling wine categories this year, with Champagne taking home 256 medals, including 11 Golds, while Prosecco won 84 medals.

The supermarket sector enjoyed a number of sparkling successes as Marks & Spencer scooped a Gold Outstanding medal for its £30 Charles Orban Blanc de Noirs NV and a Gold medal for its £32 Abel Charlot Brut NV. At the cheaper end of the price spectrum there was also a Gold medal for Aldi thanks to its £7.29 Philippe Michel Crémant du Jura NV.

“To see such great value wines pick up the top medals in the competition is fantastic news for all wine lovers,” commented Ewan Lacey, general manager of the IWSC. “Wines submitted into the International Wine & Spirit Competition aren’t judged in value categories so our experts always judge the product’s quality based solely on what is in the glass.”

The IWSC also used this opportunity to announce its northern hemisphere trophy winners, who included a mix of established classics and less well-known names.

The Rioja Trophy went to CVNE’s Imperial Rioja Gran Reserva 2008, while The Indigenous Grape Varieties Trophy to Amarone della Valpolicella DOCG Classico Riserva Montefante 2010 from Azienda Vinicola Farina.

In the sparkling categories, The NV Champagne Trophy went to Le Brun de Neuville Lady de N Chardonnay NV, with The Vintage Champagne Trophy going to Champagne Charles Heidsieck for its Blanc des Millénaires 1995. Meanwhile The Prosecco Trophy was won by La Riva Dei Frati’s Valdobbiadene Prosecco Superiore DOCG Cartizze 2014.

Among the various fortified wine prizes, The Sherry Trophy was won by Harvey’s Palo Cortado 30 year old VORS, The Madeira Trophy went to Leacock’s Bual 1966 and The Port Trophy was claimed by Andresen Porto Colheita 1991.

The IWSC will now head to next week’s Vinexpo Bordeaux to show off many of these medal winners before its next series of results, the spirits medal winners, are announced on Thursday 23 July.

For more information or full results so far from this year’s competition, visit

It looks like you're in Asia, would you like to be redirected to the Drinks Business Asia edition?

Yes, take me to the Asia edition No