Home Winners > Winners 2014 > FRANCE: Beaujolais

Winner Details

FRANCE: Beaujolais

2014: Gold: 0; Silver: 4; Bronze: 1; Commended: 3
2013: Gold: 1; Silver: 5; Bronze: 2; Commended: N/A
Must-list status: 45%
Overall SWA performance 2014: D-

Following its stunning success in the SWAs of 2011 and 2012 (with the superlative 2009 and 2010 vintages), when it was arguably the star of the whole competition, this year Beaujolais was back playing ‘Third Peasant from the Left’ at the rear of the chorus.

The failing, however, lay not so much with the region’s vignerons as with the weather gods, who dealt them a pretty duff hand in 2011 and (particularly) 2012. The same conditions that gave Chablis its steely glint (and a slew of Gold medals) left us here with wines that were fresh, light and rather joyless – certainly lacking the winning red-fruited plushness of the past few years.

It’s a shame, since Beaujolais’ position as ‘a bit like cheap red Burgundy only much better value’ made for a compelling proposition, and one that has brought it a regular place or two on the Gold List. But not this year. The wines looked decidedly awkward once put up against competitors from elsewhere. For these mid-weight reds, Austria and Germany looked a better bet.


This was the first year since 2008 that Beaujolais has failed to get a single wine on the Gold List.

From the Tasting Teams

‘The good ones managed to get the freshness in there – that jolliness you want from Beaujolais.’ Simon Woods, team leader