The international wine challenge, in its 38th year, has announced the best 10 wines of 2021 from its latest competition. The 10 best wines came from eight countries and being declared the best in their respective categories. The judging was headed by a panel of leading global experts from across the industry after multiple stages of intensive blind-tastings. Five of these wines have been awarded as the ‘Champion’, which is given to wines that are considered the absolute ‘best in show’, beating all other National Trophy winners in the categories of red, white, sparkling, sweet, and fortified.

Chris Hatcher Steven Frost from Wolf Blass Wines
Chris Hatcher & Steven Frost from Wolf Blass Wines

The winners are as follows

France Clos de la Roche Grand Cru Cuvée Cyrot Chaudron
Hospices de Beaune 2019, Maison Albert Bichot
IWC Champion Red Wine 2021,
International Pinot Noir Trophy, French
Red Trophy, Red Burgundy Trophy
France Vintage 2008, Piper-Heidsieck IWC Champion Sparkling Wine 2021,
Champagne Trophy, Vintage Classic
Blend Champagne Trophy
Greece Sigalas Santorini Barrel 2020, Domaine Sigalas IWC Champion White Wine 2021,
Greek White Trophy
Italy Vinsanto di Carmignano Capezzana Riserva 2013,
Tenuta Di Capezzana
IWC Champion Sweet Wine 2021,
Italian Sweet Trophy
Spain Lustau Palo Cortado V.O.R.S 30 Years, Emilio Lustau IWC Champion Fortified Wine 2021,
Sherry Trophy, Palo Cortado Trophy
Australia Wolf Blass Grey Label McLaren Vale Shiraz 2019,
Wolf Blass Wines
International Shiraz Trophy, McLaren
Vale Shiraz Trophy
Austria Sauvignon Blanc Kitzeck-Sausal Südsteiermark
2019, Weingut Schneeberger
International Sauvignon Blanc Trophy,
Austrian Sauvignon Blanc Trophy
France Corton Charlemagne Grand Cru Domaine du Pavillon 2019,
Maison Albert Bichot
IWC Organic Trophy 2021, International
Chardonnay Trophy, French White
Trophy, White Burgundy Trophy
Germany Erbacher Siegelsberg Riesling Grosses Gewächs
2015, Weingut Schloss Reinhartshausen
International Riesling Trophy, German
White Trophy
New Zealand Valli Pinot Noir Gibbston Vineyard 2019, Valli
IWC Sustainable Trophy 2021, New
Zealand Red Trophy, Central Otago
Pinot Noir Trophy

For the international wine challenge, a Greek producer, Domaine Sigalas, was awarded the 2021 Champion White Wine for Sigalas Santorini Barrel 2020, which is made from the indigenous grape variety Assyrtiko. A Shiraz from McLaren Vale has beaten examples from across Australia and Syrah from around the world to be awarded International Shiraz Trophy, securing its place in the 10 best wines of the International Wine Challenge 2021.

This year’s result represents the first time in almost a decade that Australia has won this trophy. Also, winemakers Chris Hatcher & Steven Frost won IWC Red Winemaker of the Year for the fourth time. Neighboring New Zealand secured its place in the 10 best wines of the International Wine Challenge 2021 with the Valli Pinot Noir Gibbston Vineyard 2019 from Central Otago claiming the IWC Sustainable Trophy. New Zealand saw success in the wider competition with a Chardonnay from Hawke’s Bay, which beat white wines from across the country to be awarded the New Zealand White Trophy.

Co-Chair Tim Atkin MW commented: ‘With wines from over 50 countries entered into the IWC and each wine judged purely on its merit, it’s impossible to predict which wines will come out on top in any given year, which is what makes the competition so exciting. It’s great to see lesser-known wines such as the Austrian Sauvignon Blanc and an Assyrtiko from Greece standing alongside more familiar names in this year’s top 10 scoring wines.