|France tops International Wine Challenge leaderboard|
|Written by Laura Heywood|
|Tuesday, 22 May 2012 11:22|
The top three gold medal-winning nations in the 2012 International Wine Challenge are reigning champions France with 120, Australia with 69 and Portugal with 55.
France topped the medal board overall with a total of 1,136 medals, while Australia came second with 673 and Portugal third with 444.
Wales celebrated three commended awards for Ancre Hill Estates Sparkling Rosé, Ancre Hill Estates Sparkling White and Tintern Parva Bacchus.
In the Queen's Diamond Jubilee year, English wines are also celebrating their success with a record sweep of 49 medals, an increase of 36% on last year.
The best of British sparkled, led by Ridgeview Marksman and Camel Valley Brut 2010, which were both awarded gold medals. Another two Britons were behind medal-winning wines – Katie Jones picked up her first gold medal for Domaine Jones Fitou 2010, and Howard Bilton won a silver alongside Australian winemaker David Baverstock for Howard's Folly Alvarinho 2010.
The 29th IWC saw 426 gold medals awarded – the highest gold medal tally in the history of the IWC – with winning wines selected from a record 50 countries. For the first time, entries were received from Colombia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, with the latter awarded one silver and two bronze.
Among the UK supermarkets, Marks & Spencer, Tesco, Waitrose and the the Co-operative were all awarded gold medals.
In the own-label category, Marks & Spencer dominated with 233 medals (a 253% increase on last year), 12 of which were gold. Tesco came second with 78 medals (six gold) followed by Asda (45 medals), Sainsbury's (26 medals) and Waitrose (15 medals).
The Co-operative saw a year-on-year increase of 160% with 13 medal wins, Aldi with 11 medals and Morrisons with six.
For full details of all the winning wines, visit the IWC's website at internationalwinechallenge.com.