This year's winner of the Decanter World Wine Awards International Trophy for the Best in Show Sweet Over £15 went to Kutjevo, Traminac Ledeno, Slavonia 2011, Croatia.
Kutjevo, Traminac Ledeno, Slavonia, Croatia 2011 (10.5%)
Elegant with a trace of caramel, crème brûlée, mandarin and caramelised oranges, overlaid with intense apricot aromas. Sweet honeydew melon, orange and lemon rind with good purity. 375mls
Not available in the UK
Tasted against • Paul Ginglinger, Gewurztraminer, Grand Cru Pfersigberg, Alsace, France 2011 • Gorka Izagirre, Arima, Chacolí De Vizcaya-Bizkaiko Txakolina, Spain 2010 • Domaine Cauhapé, Quintessence du Petit Manseng, Jurançon, Southwest France 2009 • Château Laville, Sauternes, Bordeaux, France 2009 • Marjan Simˇciˇc, Leonardo, Goriska Brda, Primorska, Slovenia 2006 • Lanciola, Vin Santo del Chianti Colli Fiorentini, Tuscany, Italy 2007 • Yarden Golan Heights Winery, Yarden Heights, Golan Heights, Galilee, Israel 2011 • Denbies, Noble Harvest, Surrey, England 2011 • Bischöfliche Weingüter, Kanzemer Altenberg Riesling Beerenauslese, Mosel, Germany 2010 • Tramin, Terminum, Alto Adige, Italy 2010 • De Bortoli, Noble One Botrytis Semillon, New South Wales, Australia 2009 • Château Soucherie, Côteaux du Layon Chaume, Loire, France 2010 • Royal Tokaji, Szt. Tamás Single Vineyard, Tokaji 6 Puttonyos, Tokaj-Hegyalja, Hungary 2007 • Riverby Estate, Noble Riesling, Marlborough, New Zealand 2011 • Nederburg, Private Bin Eminence Noble Late Harvest Muscadel, Paarl, South Africa 2009 • Nk’Mip Cellars, Qwam Qwmt Riesling Icewine, Okanagan Valley, British Columbia, Canada 2011 • Argyros, Vinsanto, Santorini, Aegean Islands, Greece 1991
In the final taste-off 18 wines took part – a staggering number even for this category. With so many competitors it’s no surprise that we saw great variety among them, but a newcomer to note was Denbies’ Noble Harvest, England’s first Regional Trophy-winning sweet wine.
The sweeter a wine, the more difficult it can be for the grape type to shine through all that sugar. Not in this case: the piercing concentration and length of the red rose petal, lavender honey and fresh lychee notes that are the hallmarks of Gewurztraminer, linger on the tongue.
Such wines are made in tiny quantities and require huge attention to detail. What makes this one even more remarkable is that Kutjevo is an enormous business with more than 1,000ha of vines, making an extensive range of all styles and qualities of red and white. Yet despite vast, modern production facilities, Kutjevo still keeps alive a long tradition of producing tiny batches of near-perfect dessert wines.
Angela Muir MW
Written by Decanter