When it comes to wine, you get what you pay for, the Decanter World Wine Awards has proved.

And that’s good news, as recent research has shown that consumers are not cutting back on wine purchases as the recession bites.

The results of the Decanter World Wine Awards, which are announced in full at a dinner at London’s Hempel Hotel on Monday and in Decanter magazine on 3 September, show overwhelmingly that price means quality.

As the graph below shows, the number of top awards – Gold medals, International and Regional Trophies – increases as the wine goes up in value.

Source: Decanter magazine

In May this year the Wine and Spirit Association (WSTA) said that 60% of consumers would rather cut their spending on sweets, chocolate, beer and soft drinks than cut back on their wine purchases.

While it is important to stress that a huge number of wines in the Under £10 category won medals, more Golds were won in the more expensive categories.

Gold medals in the £4.99 and below range comprise only 2% of the wines in that price band.

At the other end of the spectrum, for wines worth more than £40, Gold Medal winners make up more than 16% of the total in that band. Silver medals show the same sort of trajectory.

Overall, Decanter World Wine Awards judges said consumers should expect to pay an average of £6.99 for a ‘decent’ bottle of wine.

Of Decanter’s top judges, the regional chairs (noted experts in each category), only two said that they would be happy spending less than £5 on a bottle of wine.

Written by Adam Lechmere