NEW WORLD: Pinot Noir, Chile

2018 Gold 2      Silver 2      Bronze 2      Commended 4
2017 Gold 0      Silver 4      Bronze 1      Commended 4

In a year that was short on good news for Chile, this was a rare ray of sunshine. Two Golds might not sound like a lot, but it’s the best the country has ever managed – and better than Australia, for instance, which quite fancies its chances with Burgundy’s red grape.

And while four other medals isn’t exactly spectacular either, viewed in isolation, in fact this is more the result of a relatively low number of entries (certainly compared with a couple of years ago) than any negative feedback on the part of our tasters.

In short, if we’d had a more confident round of submissions from Chile, this could have been a really strong category – the only negative being the lukewarm reception for the wines from Leyda. A surprise, given that for most observers it’s Chile’s best place for the grape.


 ‘This was a very interesting range of Pinots. I was particularly looking at whether I would sell each wine for its price point, and I thought there were definitely some options.’ Linh Ziolkowska, Yauatcha City

‘Outside of Leyda, for the majority of these you wouldn’t be questioning whether it was Pinot or not. And customers are receptive to Chilean wines in general. The middle price point was good, and even at the upper end, equivalent at £15 from elsewhere in the New World would be lower quality.’ James Fryer, Portland

‘I think we’ve been unlucky with what’s been submitted from Leyda. We didn’t get the wines worthy of the region here.’ Martin Lam, team leader