14 gold-medal-winning white wines for Christmas

Here are 14 fantastic white wines that would be ideal for Christmas, and all of them have gained a Gold medal or higher in The Autumn Tasting, which saw over 300 samples assessed ‘blind’ this month.

white wine i stockHaving tasted a range of styles and price bands for The Autumn Tasting, I have picked out the Gold-medal-winning whites from the week-long sampling, as well as two Masters – the ultimate accolade reserved only for outstanding wines.

With the Autumn Tasting by the drinks business instigated to recognise outstanding winemaking from all parts of the globe, the white wines below take in a broad sweep of sources, styles, grape varieties and even a multi-vintage blend.

Uniting all the wines below is one crucial thing: they are brilliant drops, and this judgment has been reached following an entirely independent, blind tasting by professional and experienced tasters – who included Patrick Stefanowicz MW, David Round MW and myself (Patrick Schmitt MW).

The Autumn Tasting was conducted at 28-50 Wine Workshop & Kitchen, Covent Garden, London during the week beginning 5 October. The white wine selection below has been ordered from cheapest to priciest.

14. Gotas de Mar Albariño

A deliciously refreshing drop bursting with ripe citrus and white peach, while a touch of wet stone and salt characterises the long, clean finish.
  • 
Producer: Hammeken Cellars
  • Source: Spain, DO Rias Baixas
  • Grape(s): Albarino
  • Vintage 2019
  • Residual sugar level: 2.6g/l
  • Abv: 12%
  • Approximate retail price (UK): £10-15
  • Medal: Gold

13. Casteani Viognier ‘Santasso’

A strong and sunny wine with layers of ripe nectarine and fresh apricot along with an appealing touch of peach stone bitterness to refresh the mouth after all that intense, fleshy white orchard fruit.
  • Producer: Tenuta Casteani
  • Source: Italy, Maremma Toscana DOC
  • Grape(s): Viognier
  • Vintage 2019
  • Abv: 14.5%
  • Approximate retail price (UK): £10-15
  • Medal: Gold

12. Moraia Vermentino 2019 Bio

A seriously refreshing organic drop with all the juicy pink grapefruit appeal of a Sauvignon Blanc but none of the herbaceous elements. Expect masses of lime cordial and lemongrass aromatics and a lasting fresh citrus zest character in the mouth.
  • Producer: Tenuta Moraia
  • Source: Italy, Maremma Toscana DOC
  • Grape(s): Vermentino
  • Vintage 2019
  • Abv: 13%
  • Approximate retail price (UK): £15-20
  • Medal: Gold

11. Monterò Bianco 2016 Bio ‘Linvisibile’

Hailing from the 2016 vintage this is an unusual example of Vermentino with a few years of bottle-age, but don’t let that put you off, this is not oxidised. Rather, it has a range of delicious characters that are reminiscent of maturing dry Riesling, with notes of beeswax, honey, peach and lime, and a lovely taut texture to the refreshing finish.
  • Producer: Monterò
  • Source: Italy, Maremma Toscana DOC
  • Grape(s): Vermentino
  • Vintage 2016
  • Abv: 13%
  • Approximate retail price (UK): £20-20
  • Medal: Gold

10. Robert Mondavi Private Selection Bourbon Barrels Chardonnay

There’s nothing subtle about this Chardonnay from Robert Mondavi, but if you like your white wines with layers of flavour from ripe yellow fruit to butterscotch, cashew nut and lemon meringue, then you’ll love this example that sees sun-soaked grapes married to the sweet characters imparted by a period spend ageing in ex-Bourbon barrels.
  • Producer: Robert Mondavi
  • Source: USA, California
  • Grape(s): Chardonnay (95%) Orange Muscat (5%)
  • Vintage 2019
  • Abv: 14.5%
  • Approximate retail price (UK): £10-15
  • Medal: Gold

9. Ventopuro Single Vineyard Chardonnay

An appealing style of Chardonnay with some a notes of freshly-toasted bread and cooler climate fruit characters from lime to green gage. A persistent, bright, layered and good value oaked Chardonnay on the lighter spectrum.
  • Producer: Ventopuro by Matetic
  • Source: Chile, Casablanca Valley
  • Grape(s): Chardonnay
  • Vintage 2018
  • Abv: 13.0%
  • Residual sugar: 2/gl
  • Approximate retail price (UK): £10-15
  • Medal: Gold

8. Seven Numbers Furmint

A brilliant example of the wonders of Central Europe’s Furmint grape – the basis of the great sweet wines of Tokaji – and here used to make a richly-textured dry white wine with flavours of grapefruit, elderflower, a touch of pineapple and a hint of vanilla from the oak used in the maturation process. While gently oily in style, it’s wonderfully fresh too.
  • Producer: Puklavec Family Wines
  • Source: Slovenia, Stajerska
  • Grape(s): Furmint
  • Vintage 2018
  • Abv: 15.0%
  • Residual sugar: 5.1 g/l
  • Approximate retail price (UK): £15-20 (£16)
  • Medal: Gold

7. Meiomi Chardonnay

A first-rate example of a generous and classically California style of Chardonnay, with flavours of vanilla, melon, apple pie and buttered popcorn. It’s soft and easy, but with just enough freshness to keep it from becoming heavy.
  • Producer: Meiomi
  • Source: USA, California
  • Grape(s): Chardonnay
  • Vintage 2019
  • Abv: 13.5%
  • Residual sugar: 5.1 g/l
  • Approximate retail price (UK): £15-20 (£16)
  • Medal: Gold

6. Sirmian Pinot Bianco

A delicious, ripe, pineapple-scented white with a creamy vanilla character and a tangy citric finish.

  • Producer: Nals Margreid
  • Source: Italy, Alto Adige
  • Grape(s): Pinot Bianco
  • Vintage 2018
  • Abv: 14.0%
  • Residual sugar: 2.5 g/l
  • Approximate retail price (UK): £20-30 (£16)
  • Medal: Gold

5. Pasqua, ‘Hey French’ Bianco, Veneto IGT

A fascinating multi-vintage white blend with a delicious mix of mature fruit characters and fresh ones too, as well as a gently nutty oak influence. Expect a delicious mix of flavours from honey, beeswax and toast to zesty citrus and a dry, gently grippy nature to the finish.

  • Producer: Pasqua
  • Source: Italy, Veneto
  • Grape(s): Garganega (50%), Pinot Bianco (25%), Sauvignon Blanc (25%)
  • Vintage 2013-2015-2016-2017
  • Abv: 13.0%
  • Residual sugar: 3.5 g/l
  • Approximate retail price (UK): £20-30
  • Medal: Gold

4. Baron Salvadori Chardonnay Riserva

A exciting find in the world of Chardonnay with some slightly honeyed notes as the wine shows elements of maturity along with classic fine Chardonnay characters of peach, hazelnut, vanilla, lemon curd and a touch of beeswax. A delicious, powerful, layered, fresh, white wine with some aged characters.

  • Producer: Nals Margreid
  • Source: Italy, Alto Adige
  • Grape(s): Chardonnay
  • Vintage 2017
  • Abv: 13.0%
  • Residual sugar: 2.1 g/l
  • Approximate retail price (UK): £30-50
  • Medal: Master

3. Cave de Tain, ‘Au Coeur Des Siecles’ Hermitage Blanc

This white wine from the Hermitage hill that’s so famous for great long lived reds is a fine and fascinating mix of caramel, vanilla and lemon meringue, which is followed by a fresh fresh finish with lingering toasty notes.
  • Producer: Cave de Tain
  • Source: France, Northern Rhone, Hermitage
  • Grape(s): Marsanne (90%) Roussanne (10%)
  • Vintage 2017
  • Abv: 13.5%
  • Residual sugar: less than 2 g/l
  • Approximate retail price (UK): £50+
  • Medal: Gold

2. Gran Vino Blanco

Tasted blind this wine had characters reminiscent of classic white Rioja, with characters ranging from honey, wax, hazelnuts, cream, peach, pineapple and a toasty, dry, slightly grippy finish. A powerfully flavoured, layered,  ready-to-drink Chardonnay with plenty of personality.
  • Producer: Propiedad de Arinzano
  • Source: Spain, Navarra
  • Grape(s): Chardonnay
  • Vintage 2017
  • Abv: 15%
  • Approximate retail price (UK): £50+
  • Medal: Gold

1. Archive Wine Furmint

Now 50 years old, this is a remarkable example of the long lived nature of wines made from the Furmint grape. While fully mature, with notes of tea leaves and honey, hazelnuts and orange marmalade, it’s not oxidised, and still exhibits a lovely lively citric freshness too. A delicious chance to try a very old and very rare white wine.
  • Producer: Puklavec Family Wines
  • Source: Slovenia, Stajerska
  • Grape(s): Furmint
  • Vintage 1971
  • Residual sugar: 9.3 g/l
  • Abv: 11%
  • Approximate retail price (UK): £50+
  • Medal: Gold

Deja una respuesta

Your email address will not be published.

Previous Story

Waitrose and John Lewis promise 'Christmas campaign like no other' : The Marketing Week Christmas blog 2020 - Marketing Week

Next Story

Inexpensive and Easy Christmas Decor

Latest from Uncategorized