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Home Winners > Winners 2016 > HOUSE WINES: Red

Winner Details

House Wines: Red

2016 Gold: 4 Silver: 12 Bronze: 11 Commended: 26
2015 Gold: 6 Silver: 11 Bronze: 18 Commended: 24

As with the House Whites, so too with the House Reds. There were fewer Golds and fewer overall medals than last year, though the Silvers and Commendeds did both see small increases. Not only that, but only two of our Medal winners were under £4 this year.

Admittedly, with over £2 per bottle taken up in duty, this perhaps isn’t surprising, but we’re certainly seeing more wines in this category over the £5 mark than we used to.

It’s an ongoing trend, and one that might see the £5.50 ex VAT House Wine limit pushed up to £6 next year. When we started this competition back in 2007, the cut-off was £4. Go figure…

Merlot and Malbec seemed to be the most successful grape varieties, with Chile picking up a third of the medals. And the tasters, broadly speaking, were happier with what they saw here than in the white and rosé flights.

FROM THE TASTING TEAMS

‘It was a surprise how much good wine you can get at the lower price range.’ Ned Neville-Rolfe, Vinoteca King’s Cross

‘House wine is a category that scares some sommeliers a bit, but you do find a lot of gems.’ Andrea Briccarello, team leader

‘The perfect house red is something pleasant, easy going, enjoyable for everyone, medium-bodied. Some were too heavy to be house reds.’ Stefano Pirondi, Bread Street Kitchen

‘In most of our flight, you couldn’t pick out the varietal – it was just “red wine”.’ Jonathan Kleeman, Social Eating House

‘Some were too green and mean. At this price point they need to have fruit.’ Annette Scarfe MW, team leader

‘Sometimes you can have too much in a house wine, you just want something easy drinking.’ Richard Brookes, Caroline Catering

“If you can nail your house red, you’ve got it made.” Jade Koch, team leader

“In house wine, the body isn’t as important as the balance. The best here were well made, easy-drinking wines.” Andrés Ituarte, Avenue Restaurant

FOOTNOTE: The price limit for House Wine is £5.50 ex-VAT.


Award winners

Found 53 wines

House Wine: Red - <£5.50 ex-VAT

Vistamar, Sepia Reserva, Malbec 2014, Maule Valley, Chile

Gold medal winner

Freshness and complexity won the day. 'Wood smoke and spiced nose, more brambly fruit on the palate with great length,' said Michael Fiducia of Drake's Restaurant, with team leader Angela Reddin recommending lamb to match its 'hedgerow fruits and garrigue herb scents', and Gustavo Medina of Tate Britain noting: 'Green fruit with fresh herbs on the nose, and red and black forest fruits on the palate.'

£4.78 Kingsland

Badet Clément, La Cour des Dames, Syrah 2015, Languedoc, France

Gold medal winner

Versatility and accessibility put Badet Clement on the Gold podium with this southern French Syrah. 'A supple food wine,' said Hakkasan London's Rebecca Coates, adding: 'Good depth of ruby colour and food-matching potential.' 'Complex nose and elegant on the palate,' said Carlos Ferreira of The Sign of the Don, adding: Black fruit aromas and a bit of oak, mushroomy wet leaves and some spicy notes on the palate, with good balance and a very good finish.'

£4.66 Molson Coors

Winery Exchange, Aires Andinos, Malbec 2015, Mendoza, Argentina

Gold medal winner

A savoury tang and open, friendly nature made Winery Exchange a Gold-Lister with this Argentine Malbec. 'Lovely, easy, plummy red with nice vegetal notes and silky texture, plus some elegance on the finish,' said La Trompette's Tanguy Martin, while Bartosz Hilla of Drake's Restaurant felt the 'warm fruits on the palate, low acidity and medium tannins' added up to a wine with 'good balance'. The Vineyard Group's James Hocking succinctly concluded: 'Fantastic value!'

£5.08 Majestic Commercial

Félix Solís Avantis, Casa Vista, Merlot 2015, Central Valley, Chile

Gold medal winner

A blend of spice and ripe tannins, plus a lengthy finish and great value for money took this to Gold. 'Very spicy and toasty' despite a touch of reduction on the nose, said team leader Andrea Briccarello, pleased that on the palate the fruit was 'shining with wild flavours and a long finish'. Piotr Tomaszewski of JKS Restaurants noted nutty fruits, red cooked apple and hibiscus to add to the list of descriptors.

£5.50 Matthew Clark

Vistamar, Brisa, Merlot 2015, Central Valley, Chile

Silver medal winner

'Distinctive dried and plummy fruit character and good acidity, perfect pub house wine,' said Andrea Domenicucci of Whatley Manor. 'Immediately attractive, fruity wine, easy on its own or with food, great value,' agreed Richard Brooks of Caroline Catering.

£3.64 Kingsland

Vistamar, Sepia Reserva, Pinot Noir 2014, Casablanca Valley, Chile

Silver medal winner

Michael Fiducia of Drake's Restaurant liked its 'wonderfully perfumed nose and dry, elegant palate', while team leader Angela Reddin praised its 'lovely, ripe, joyous flavours of bramble and red fruits with red plum'.

£4.78 Kingsland

GCF Exclusif, Parlez-Vous?, Malbec 2014, Vin de France, France

Silver medal winner

A 'plush and user-friendly' red, according to Avenue Restaurant's Andrés Ituarte, noting: 'Sweet red cherry fruit, medium tannins, rich malo-buttery palate supported by solid wood spices.' 'Easy-drinking, with pleasant, sweet, ripe fruit,' added team leader Olivier Marie.

£4.81 Groupe GCF, Tate Smith

Trivento, Tribu, Malbec 2015, Mendoza, Argentina

Silver medal winner

'Brambly fruit nose, brambly fruit on the palate and on the finish. Pleasant and uncomplicated, with soft tannins,' said Sarah Guignard of The French Table of this good-natured, good-value red. 'Lots of red fruits, with a distinct violet note,' agreed Andrés Ituarte of Avenue Restaurant.

£4.05 CyT UK

Empresas Lourdes, Alta Rita, Merlot 2015, Central Valley, Chile

Silver medal winner

'Plenty of ripe fruit, a decent and versatile wine for the table, by the glass or with food,' began Richard Brooks of Caroline Catering, while Andrea Domenicucci of Whatley Manor noted: 'Good sweetness from the toasty wood and fresh leathery flavours.'

£4.70 Lanchester Wine Cellars

Copestick Murray, Two Ridge Trail, Merlot 2015, South Eastern Australia, Australia

Silver medal winner

'Intriguing nose of spices, wild herbs and meat, and gamey with savoury notes on the palate, dried roses,' said team leader Andrea Briccarello, with Carlos Ferreira of The Sign of the Don finding 'green pepper, mushroom, black cherry and a perfect, tobacco leaf finish'.

£4.71 Majestic Commercial

Copestick Murray, Big Bombora, Shiraz 2014, South Australia, Australia

Silver medal winner

'Juicy and warm on the palate, with bramble fruits. Distinctive and fresh,' said team leader Jade Koch. 'Good aromas of mushroom and vanilla,' added Joaquin Alba of Aramark at JP Morgan. 'A lovely, generous, bistro glug, long and honest,' said team leader Simon Woods.

£4.71 Majestic Commercial

Copestick Murray, Lonely Tree, Zinfandel 2013, California, USA

Silver medal winner

Showing good complexity for the money, this wine had a 'very peppery nose', according to Carlos Ferreira of The Sign of the Don, along with 'tobacco, black cherry, oak and plum, very good balance and an amazing finish', to match well with grilled meats. With its supple tannins, team leader Natasha Hughes MW described it as 'a real crowd pleaser'.

£4.96 Majestic Commercial

Lahoz, Monte Grande, Tinto, Tierra de Castilla 2015, Castilla-La Mancha, Spain

Silver medal winner

'Interesting, sweet spice and cherry nose, with cherry, red berries and blackberry on the palate,' began Robert Mason of Cheese at Leadenhall, concluding: 'Good tannins make it a food-friendly option.'

£4.69 Frederic Robinson

Bibendum Wine, Gable View, Cabernet Sauvignon 2015, Western Cape, South Africa

Silver medal winner

Ivan Vegas of Fox Fine Wines & Spirits enjoyed the contrast between an 'intense, attractive nose that invites you to enjoy the wine' and a 'soft palate, well balanced with pleasant tannic structure'. 'Lovely floral finish,' added Michael Fiducia of Drake's Restaurant.

£5.33 Bibendum

Diren, Karmen Red 2014, Western Anatolia, Turkey

Silver medal winner

Tomasz Kuszneruk of Plateau Restaurant found this wine's 'black olive tapenade' aromas attractive, while The Sign of the Don's Carlos Ferreira enjoyed its 'juicy strawberry and red cherry, well-balanced, sweet and spicy palate'. 'A crowd pleaser,' said team leader Natasha Hughes MW.

£4.35 Taste Turkey

Félix Solís Avantis, Casa Albali, Tempranillo/Shiraz 2015, Valdepeñas, Spain

Silver medal winner

'Ripe, summer pudding aromas and a touch herbal,' began team leader Angela Reddin, going on: 'Some mint and pine character on the palate. Would work well with some good fish. Punches above its weight.' Andrés Ituarte of Avenue Restaurant agreed, saying: 'This shows good regional character. A touch of wood is welcome and brings balance.'

£5.50 Matthew Clark

Isidro Milagro, Escena 2014, Rioja, Spain

Bronze medal winner

Tomasz Kuszneruk of Plateau Restaurant found a 'mix of animal notes and green olives and tea' on the nose, followed by a youthful, medium-weight palate of 'fresh cherry and plums with drying tannins on the finish'.

£4.20 Kingsland

Broadland Wineries, Compass Point, Shiraz 2015, South Eastern Australia, Australia

Bronze medal winner

'Menthol and medicinal cherry and blackcurrant throat sweet aromas with perfumed hints, dark and brooding on the palate with good tannins, chocolate and tobacco richness on the finish,' commented Robert Mason of Cheese at Leadenhall.

£4.99 Broadland Wineries

Bodegas Aguila, Tierra Roja, Old Vines, Garnacha 2007, Cariñena, Spain

Bronze medal winner

'Well made, with plenty of notes of ripe red fruits and a decent-length finish,' said Stefano Pirondi of Bread Street Kitchen. 'Good complexity with berry aromas,' added Andrea Domenicucci of Whatley Manor.

£4.54 Greene King

Lanchester Wines, El Pico, Merlot 2014, Central Valley, Chile

Bronze medal winner

'Dark berry compote on a juicy, ripe palate, not complex but delivers,' began team leader Angela Reddin, while The Savoy's Erik Simonics felt it had 'great drinkability, with lots of red fruits and juicy, soft taste'.

£4.45 Greene King

Concha y Toro, Mountain Range, Merlot 2014, Central Valley, Chile

Bronze medal winner

'Cherry and roasted green peppers, savoury barbecue flavours on the nose,' began Devon Pryor of Blandford Comptoir, with Vinoteca's Zigmars Grinbergs adding: 'Pleasing, rich fruit, jammy and appealing, over-delivers for the price.'

£3.92 CyT UK

Luis Felipe Edwards, Los Romeros, Malbec 2014, Central Valley, Chile

Bronze medal winner

'Sweet, ripe fruit with a lively twist,' began team leader Annette Scarfe MW, with Tobias Brauweiler MS of Hakkasan Group adding: 'Open, fresh red fruit with a touch of wood, good cherry fruit and fine tannin on palate.'

£5.42 Matthew Clark

Hallgarten, Fonte do Nico, Tinto 2014, Península de Setúbal, Portugal

Bronze medal winner

Andrea Domenicucci of Whatley Manor found some 'interesting spiciness and toastiness', while Bread Street Kitchen's Stefano Pirondi noted 'intensity, sour cherry and red cherry' fruit. 'Pleasant and easy,' added Richard Brooks of Caroline Catering.

£4.33 Majestic Commercial

Liberty Wines, Sant'Andrea, Chianti 2013, Tuscany, Italy

Bronze medal winner

'Strawberry, fresh fruit aromas, dry tannins on the palate, leafy and a little earthy,' said Devon Pryor of Blandford Comptoir, while Laure Patry of Social Wine & Tapas also found 'meaty, charcuterie notes on a juicy and savoury, light and dry palate, giving good value'.

£5.50 Majestic Commercial

Cellers Unió, Clos del Pinell, Garnacha 2014, Catalonia, Spain

Bronze medal winner

Team leader Natasha Hughes MW found this wine to be 'good value', noting its 'pleasantly crunchy and slightly herbaceous fruit on the palate, along with decent balance and a bit of personality'.

£4.15 Buckingham Schenk

Bibendum Wine, Acacia Tree, Pinotage 2015, Western Cape, South Africa

Bronze medal winner

'Forest berries, cedar wood, smooth texture, medium body and ripe tannins, and it's fresh with a medium finish,' said Enikő Heidenwolf of 67 Pall Mall, adding: 'Very well-made wine.'

£4.68 Bibendum

Bibendum Wine, The Bulletin, Zinfandel 2013, California, USA

Bronze medal winner

Stefano Pirondi of Bread Street Kitchen enjoyed its 'welcoming nose of ripe red berries', while Richard Brooks of Caroline Catering found 'rich and juicy red fruit flavours with attractive development mid-palate'.

£5.20 Bibendum

Aragonesas, La Riada, Garnacha/Tempranillo 2013, Campo de Borja, Spain

Commended medal winner

£3.55 Kingsland

GMDF, Princes de France, Côtes du Rhône 2014, Rhône, France

Commended medal winner

£4.10 Kingsland

Foncalieu , Le Sanglier de la Montagne, Carignan 2015, Vin de France, France

Commended medal winner

Cono Sur, Organic, Pinot Noir 2015, Colchagua Valley, Chile

Commended medal winner

£4.75 CyT UK

Cono Sur, Los Gansos, Merlot 2015, Central Valley, Chile

Commended medal winner

£4.26 CyT UK

Cono Sur, Los Gansos, Pinot Noir 2015, Central Valley, Chile

Commended medal winner

£4.31 CyT UK

Patacón , Alta Rita, Cabernet Sauvignon 2014, Central Valley , Chile

Commended medal winner

Monte Verde , Merlot 2015, Central Valley , Chile

Commended medal winner

£5.50 Matthew Clark

Copestick Murray, Five Foot Track, Shiraz 2014, South Eastern Australia, Australia

Commended medal winner

Aldeanueva, Los Bailadores, Tempranillo 2015, Rioja, Spain

Commended medal winner

Winery Exchange , Marques de Calado, Tempranillo 2015, Cariñena , Spain

Commended medal winner

Sartori, Lyric, Merlot/Corvina 2014, Veneto, Italy

Commended medal winner

£5.39 Crown Cellars

LGI-Wines, Baron de Baussac, Vieilles Vignes, Carignan, Pays de l'Hérault 2015, Languedoc, France

Commended medal winner

Origin Wine, Bantry Bay, Pinotage 2015, Western Cape, South Africa

Commended medal winner

Botter, Oltre Passo, Primitivo, Salento 2014, Puglia, Italy

Commended medal winner

Bibendum Wine, Bush Telegraph, Shiraz/Viognier 2013, South Eastern Australia , Australia

Commended medal winner

£5.09 Bibendum

Bibendum Wine, Alto Bajo, Cabernet Sauvignon 2014, Central Valley , Chile

Commended medal winner

£4.97 Bibendum

Bibendum Wine, El Muro, Tinto, Tempranillo/Garnacha 2014, Aragón , Spain

Commended medal winner

£4.57 Bibendum

Diren , Collection, Oküzgözü 2012, Eastern Anatolia , Turkey

Commended medal winner

£5.05 Taste Turkey

Concha y Toro, Mountain Range, Cabernet Sauvignon 2014, Central Valley, Chile

Commended medal winner

£4.07 CyT UK

Ashton Kelder , Spinnaker Red 2014, Western Cape , South Africa

Commended medal winner

Pagó el Ariño, Olvena, Tempranillo 2014, Aragón, Spain

Commended medal winner

Félix Solís Avantis, Casa Vista, Cabernet Sauvignon 2015, Central Valley, Chile

Commended medal winner

£5.50 Matthew Clark

Export Union, Santiano, Cabernet Sauvignon 2014, Central Valley, Chile

Commended medal winner

£4.10 Molson Coors

Export Union, Pier 42, Shiraz 2014, South Eastern Australia, Australia

Commended medal winner

£4.32 Molson Coors

Direct Wines France , XV du Président, Côtes Catalanes 2014, Roussillon, France

Commended medal winner

 

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