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DWWA 2012: First wines tasted as judging week begins

The world’s greatest wine tasters have flown to London from 25 countries to judge over 14,000 wines for the Decanter World Wine Awards.

The Decanter World Wine Awards, now in its ninth year, is being judged by 56 Masters of Wine and 11 Master Sommeliers, as part of a 200-strong team of critics and tasters, all experts in their regions.

These include such stars as Isa Bal MS of the Heston Blumenthal’s restaurant the Fat Duck, Ronan Sayburn MS, director of wine at Hotel du Vin, Daniele Cernilli, former editor of Gambero Rosso, Angelo Sabbadin of Le Calandre in Padua, Italy, voted Best Italian Sommelier 2011, and Swiss sommelier Paolo Basso, Europe’s Best Sommelier 2010.

Judges taste in groups under regional chairs, many of whom have been Decanter World Wine Awards regulars for several years.

The 30 regional chairs, under the overall chairmanship of Steven Spurrier, include Michael Hill-Smith MW for Australia, jointly with Anthony Rose, Michael Schuster for Burgundy, Gerard Basset MW MS for Regional France, Ch’ng Poh Tiong for Middle East, Far East and Asia, and Stephen Brook for USA.

‘I’ve never seen so much talent in one room,’ Spurrier said. ‘There is a wonderful collegiate atmosphere; everybody just wants to get on and start judging, to get on with the race.’

Judging of the more than 14,000 wines entered for the 2012 Awards takes place over five days. Results will be announced at the London International Wine Fair on 22 May.

As part of the Decanter World Wine Awards, Decanter readers have been asked to nominate their favourite wine retailers for the Retailer of the Year Awards.

Categories are Supemarket of the Year, National Wine Merchant of the Year, London Wine Merchant of the Year, Regional Wine Merchant of the Year and Specialist Wine Merchant of the Year.

Results will be announced at the annual Decanter World Wine Awards Presentation Dinner at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden on 5 September 2012.

  • Click here to nominate your favourite wine retailer in the 2012 Retailer of the Year Awards

Written by Decanter.com staff

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