Race for IWA 2023 sets new records

Race for IWA 2023 sets new records (L-R) Sonal Holland, Founder of India Wine Awards; Rajeev Samant, Founder of Sula Vineyards; and Wolfram N. Diener, President of Messe Du?sseldorf at the Winners’ Night.

India’s largest wine competition, the India Wine Awards 2023, announced 219 winning wines across ‘Best in Show’, Gold and Silver categories at a glittering Winners Night at the Jio World Convention Centre, Mumbai, recently.

Presented by Sonal Holland Wine Academy, in association with ProWine Mumbai, the fifth edition of the awards hosted the country’s largest-ever blind-tasting competition of domestic and international wines available in India, receiving a record-breaking 460 nominations.

Sake was inducted as a new category as well, to expand the scope of the awards and acknowledge the increasing popularity of the beverage among Indian consumers.

The nominated labels were judged by a panel of 20 jury members featuring experts from the country, led by Sonal C Holland, MW and Founder and Chairperson of India Wine Awards.

The Winners’ Night brought together 600 eminent members, including luminaries of the wine and spirits industry, hospitality leaders, global trade councils and winemakers from across the world.

The guests came together to  celebrate the best- in-market wines in India and to applaud the spirit of resilience and innovation that has helped the Indian wine industry grow at a steady and assured pace year after year. 

The night celebrated Rajeev Samant, Founder and CEO of Sula Vineyards, for his contribution as a visionary excellence entrepreneur, whose pioneering work has helped lay the very foundation of the wine industry in India, awarding him with the Indian Wine Industry Leader and Champion Award.

Sonal Holland said: “This year, we are raising a Toast to Excellence in recognition of the top quality of wines nominated in the competition and those available in the country, at large. This is a testament to the phenomenal evolution of India as the most coveted, fast-emerging wine market in the world.”

Each wine was judged on a 100-point score sheet in a blind-tasting format by a panel of 20 jury members who were encouraged to put on their consumer hats to ensure that the winners reflected the taste and preferences of Indian customers.

There were 79 wines won in the Gold category, securing more than 90 points, while 110 wines won in the Silver category, securing 85-89 points. The 30 Best in Show winners were the highest-scoring wines in the competition.

Best in Show

Best Champagne: Taittinger Brut Réserve, Champagne, Non-Vintage (France)

Best Indian Sparkling Wine: York Sparkling Rosé Brut, 2020 

Best International Sparkling Wine: Villa Sandi II Fresco Prosecco Millesimato Rose DOC, 2021 (Italy) 

Best International Sparkling Wine: Gramona, La Cuvee, Brut Gran Reserva, 2017 (Spain)

Best International White Wine: Pinot Grigio: Santa Margherita Pinot Grigio Alto Adige, 2021  (Italy) 

Best Indian White Wine-Chenin Blanc: Sula Late Harvest Chenin Blanc, 2023 

Best International White Wine-Riesling: St. Urbans-Hof, QbA, Riesling "Old Vines", 2021 (Germany) 

Best International White Wine-Sauvignon Blanc: Palliser Estate Sauvignon Blanc, 2022 (New Zealand)

Best Indian White Wine-Sauvignon Blanc: The Source Sauvignon Blanc Reserve, 2023 

Best Indian White Wine-Chardonnay: Fratelli Master Selection White, 2023

Best International White Wine-Chardonnay: Tormaresca Pietrabianca Castel del Monte DOC, 2022 (Italy) 

Best International White Wine-Indigenous: Michele Chiarlo 'Rovereto' Gavi di Gavi, 2021 (Italy)

Best International Rosé Wine: Chateau la Mascaronne Cotes de Provence Rosé, 2021 (Italy)

Best International Red Wine-Pinot Noir: Domaine Chanson Gevrey-Chambertin, 2014 (France)

Best International Red Wine-Sangiovese: San Felice Campogiovanni Brunello di Montalcino DOCG, 2017 (Italy) 

Best Indian Red Wine-Sangiovese: Fratelli Wines 'Sette', 2022 

Best International Red Wine-Indigenous: Buena Vista Winery Legendary Badge Limited Edition Petite Sirah, 2020 (USA)

Best International Red Wine-Blends: Bottega II Vino Degli Dei Amarone della Valpolicella DOCG, 2017 (Italy) 

Best International Red Wine-Blends: M. Chapoutier Châteauneuf-du-Pape La Bernardine, 2016 (France) 

Best International Red Wine- Blends: Tenuta Argentiera Bolgheri Superiore, 2019 (Italy) 

Best Indian Red Wine-Shiraz: Vallonne Vineyards Syrah Reserve, 2021 (India) 

Best International Red Wine-Shiraz: Metala White Label Langhorne Creek Shiraz, 2021 (Australia) 

Best Indian Red Wine-Cabernet Sauvignon: Vallonne Vineyards Anokhee Cabernet Sauvignon Grand Reserve, 2019 (India) 

Best International Red Wine-Cabernet Sauvignon: Domaines Barons de Rothschild Lafite Collection Reserve Speciale Pauillac, 2020 (France) 

Best International Red Wine-Cabernet Sauvignon: Penfolds Bin 407 Cabernet Sauvignon, 2018 (Australia)

Best International Red Wine-Cabernet Sauvignon: Viña San Pedro Sideral, 2020 (Chile)

Best Indian Wine in a Can: Dia White Wine Sparkler by Sula Vineyards, 250 ML (India)

Best Sake: Masumi Sanka Junmai Daiginjo Sake (Japan)

Best Sake: Born 'Gold' Junmai Daiginjo Sake (Japan)

Best Sake: Gekkeikan Nigori Sake (Japan).