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Decanter World Wine Awards 2016 results: Winners revealed

See which of the 16,000 wines entered into the Decanter World Wine Awards 2016 has scooped one of the 31 coveted 'platinum - best in show' awards, plus all of the medal winners.

Decanter World Wine Awards 2016 results

Wines from Chile and France led the field in the most prestigious category of the Decanter World Wine Awards (DWWA) 2016, taking six and nine of the ‘platinum – best in show‘ medals. Out of nearly 16,000 wines tasted, only 31 reached the top-tier, previously known as international trophies.

Judgement of Tobacco Dock

In a major victory for the US in the 40th anniversary year of the Judgement of Paris, an Oregon Pinot Noir beat both premier and grand cru Burgundy wines to take the platinum – best in show prize for Pinot Noir over £15.

Wines were judged blind by 240 of the world’s best palates, including 69 Masters of Wine and 26 Master Sommeliers, during one week at London’s Tobacco Dock. Platinum winners went forward to a special tasting at Decanter headquarters to decide best in show prizes.

Quick links to DWWA 2016 results:

Surprise winners

There were also high-level wins throughout this year’s DWWA for smaller wine producing countries, emphasising the wine world’s growing strength in depth. Wines from Croatia and Switzerland won platinum – best in show medals, while Grace winery in Japan secured two platinums.

And Brazil, which hosts the Rio 2016 Olympics this summer, also performed strongly in the DWWA 2016 medals table, taking one gold and two platinum medals in the over £15 categories. Just 130 platinum medals were awarded in total; one level below ‘best in show’ and equivalent to the regional trophy medal in previous DWWA competitions.


There was also great value to be had among the upper echelons of DWWA 2016, with one Chilean Malbec scooping a platinum best in show prize with a recommended retail price below £6 a bottle at Asda supermarket in the UK. Marks & Spencer had a big year, with 18 gold and silver medals for own label wines under £15 a bottle.

A guide for wine lovers

Steven Spurrier, chair of DWWA 2016, said, ‘We only award medals to wines in which consumers can have the utmost confidence.

‘Pulling together a globally unrivalled level of top wine experts, the DWWA’s sole purpose is to recognise and reward quality.’

More highlights

Results released today offer an award winning wine to cover almost any taste or preference. Other countries that performed particularly well include Australia, Spain and Italy – the latter winning 14 platinums and 74 golds.

It was a record year for Sherry, and fortified wines in general took 11% of all gold medals available, despite accounting for only 2% of entries.

Cool Britannia

Fresh from hosting the international cool climate conference, the fledgling UK wine industry also continued to show its mettle in international competitions.

Sparkling wines from the UK may have dominated headlines, and again performed well here, but it was English still wines that proved a dark horse category of DWWA 2016. Gusbourne and Chapel Down led the field with Pinot Noir and Chardonnay respectively.

Decanter World Wine Awards results 2016, judging week

Judging week at Tobacco Dock


All wines are tasted blind by panels of regional and stylistic specialists. Gold medal winners go forward to compete against others in their region for a platinum medal. At this point, gold winners are re-tasted and can still be downgraded as well as promoted.

Platinum winners then arrive at a special blind tasting involving both Spurrier and guest vice chair Gerard Basset OBE MW MS. This is when platinum – best in show winners are chosen.

‘Each wine is a year of someone’s hard work and so it is very important to allow time to appreciate and discuss the wine for an award,’ said Sarah Kemp, Decanter’s managing director.

‘The DWWA puts a spotlight on exceptional wines, some of which may not be able to afford marketing budgets to shout about them.’

DWWA for charity

DWWA has raised more than £500,000 for the WaterAid charity since it began in 2004, by auctioning leftover wines. The next auction will take place at Christie’s in London in November.

Stay tuned for details.

Thanks to sponsors

Decanter would like to say a special thank you to Riedel, for supplying 9,000 glasses during judging week, and to not-for-profit Belu Water, for keeping judges hydrated throughout the process by providing 2,700 bottles of water.

See all DWWA 2016 Results here

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