The Independent English Wine Awards (IEWA) founder Alex Taylor of Wine Taste Bristol, sees the new competition as another way for the domestic industry to raise its profile and communicate the high-quality of English wine to a wider audience.
He said: “The quality is fantastic, but English wine is still mainly enjoyed by those ‘in the know’. Big wins against champagne at blind tasting events and news of a £100 million a year industry are remarkable. In particular, Blighty’s bubbly profile is fizzing but for the regular consumer, the rest of the country’s wine is still a relative mystery.
“Creating a really strong panel, our judges are credible and professionally diverse, from winemaker and master of wine, to retailer and educator. They’re perfectly placed to identify, reward and promote the winemakers creating amazing wines which will connect with consumers. IEWA medals will be an important consumer signpost and a really useful part of the English winemakers’ marketing toolkit.
“Ultimately, this competition is aimed at the consumer, to raise awareness, inform, engage, promote and ultimately help increase sales of English wine and assist the continued development of the industry. Of course it is also an exercise in celebration: of excellence, achievement, growth and really great wines,” Taylor said.
The IEWA will use international competition quality judging standards and its panel of expert judges will taste all wines within a carefully controlled and independently audited process.
The inaugural judging will take place in March 2017 and entries from winemakers are now open.
For more information: www.iewa.uk