Decanter writer John Stimpfig scooped the top gong at the inaugural Louis Roederer International Wine Writer’s Awards.

Despite stiff competition, the Decanter contributor (pictured, left, with JC Rouzaud, head of Louis Roederer) won the International Wine Writer of the Year Award for a series of articles in the Financial Time’s weekend supplement ‘How to Spend It’.

The judges, a mix of wine tasters, writers and representatives from the wine trade, praised the quality of the entries and said they had a hard job deciding on the overall winners.

The Book of the Year award went to American author John W. Haeger’s North American Pinot Noir, with Richard Juhlin scooping Champagne Writer of the Year for his book, 4000 Champagnes.

Liz Sagues won the Regional Wine Writer of the Year for her fortnightly column in Hamstead & Highgate Express, or Ham & High as it is known.

The awards, held in London, have taken over de facto from the Lanson awards which were cancelled earlier this year and, according to industry insiders, show no sign of being revived.

Written by Oliver Styles