Home Winners > Winners 2019 > FRANCE: Rhône - White

Winner Details

FRANCE: White Rhône

2019 GOLD: 3      SILVER: 5      BRONZE: 2      COMMENDED: 6
2018 GOLD: 2      SILVER: 3      BRONZE: 0      COMMENDED: 0

Weirdly, given that it remains quite a niched part of most wine lists, the White Rhône section has established itself down the years as one of the best – and most consistently good – parts of this competition.

At the heart of its success is its ability to make good cheap wines that can act as well-priced workhorses, as well as superlatively beautiful wines for those who aren’t counting the zeroes too closely. Driven by the 2017 vintage, our tasters this year found elegance, purity and structure – though sadly no Golds under £10 for once.


‘These started to get interesting above £13 or £15, where they were very well made, and good value for money.’ Immacolata Cannavo, Hakkasan Mayfair

‘I really liked these. There was a good selection, and good value for money. All of these were a good example of what the Rhône is about, and what it can deliver. There were both simple styles and complex wines, to satisfy every kind of palate.’ Melania Battiston, 28-50 Wine Workshop & Kitchen

‘A really good flight, with no bad wines, and lots of pretty aromatics that just got richer and oilier as you went on.’ Jade Koch, team leader

‘I really enjoyed the floral character of the younger ones here – they were elegant, with white peach and floral notes balanced by nice acidity. The price point was amazing, and they don’t need a lot of age. They’re easy to sell as an aperitif or with fish dishes, or oysters. They were really showing the grape well, as well as the region.’ Antonio Federico Moccia, 67 Pall Mall

‘This was an interesting flight, and really something for sommeliers to push. They could be fresher and easy to drink at the entry level, and then had more intensity, body, oiliness and alcohol at higher price points.’ Julien Sahut, Sexy Fish

Award winners

Found 16 wines

White Rhône

Domaine Yves Cuilleron, Condrieu La Petite Côte 2017, Rhône, France

Gold medal winner

This took home Gold for its ‘charming fruit profile with pronounced intensity of apricot, tangerine, honeysuckle, honey and marzipan’, according to The Glasshouse’s Adam Michocki, who thought it ‘well-structured, with a round and creamy texture, as well as some spice’. Alonso Abed of Hide Above enjoyed its ‘fresh peach skin notes with camomile flower and fresh honeydew aromas’, while Sexy Fish’s Lucie Kalertova thought this all added up to a perfect partner for ‘aromatic Indian dishes’.

£36.88 Enotria&Coe

Domaine Georges Vernay, Terrasses de L'Empire, Condrieu 2016, Rhône, France

Gold medal winner

‘I love the purity of fruit on the palate,’ began Valentin Radosav of Gymkhana Restaurant as this was elevated to Gold, going on to describe ‘gentle floral notes at the start, then apples, nuts and a touch of ginger’. Sommelier Wine Awards competition director Chris Losh appreciated its ‘attractively pure fruit with a gentle pithiness on the finish’, while team leader Martin Lam added that it was ‘such a great food wine – you can do so much with it’.

£51.62 Hallgarten & Novum Wines

Jean-Luc Colombo, La Belle de Mai, St-Péray 2017, Rhône, France

Gold medal winner

This ‘fresh and elegant’ white Rhône, with its ‘bright pear fruit and delicate spice’, according to team leader Laura Rhys MS, was ‘a great food-matching wine’, and a clear candidate for Gold, too. Heesoo Kang of Flat Three Restaurant described ‘citrus and green apples on the nose, leading to a palate that’s rich and ripe, with a hint of brioche and nuts’, while The Glasshouse’s Adam Michocki thought its ‘peach, apricot and honeysuckle notes’ made it a great match for ‘turbot with cauliflower purée’.

£14.81 Hatch Mansfield

Domaine Yves Cuilleron, Condrieu Les Chaillets, Vieilles Vignes 2016, Rhône, France

Silver medal winner

Team leader Tom Forrest found a ‘complex, aromatic wine with notes of peach, violets, honey and orange blossom’. He described the palate as ‘weighty and rich with beeswax, honey and ginger, and soft, ripe peachy fruit’.

£49.48 Enotria&Coe

Domaine Yves Cuilleron, Viognier 2017, Rhône, France

Silver medal winner

‘Smoky, oily and dry with a lemon zesty finish,’ noted team leader Jade Koch, with competition director Chris Losh adding: ‘Bright, with melon and pineapple fruit that tightens into a nice spicy finish.’

£17.37 Enotria&Coe

M Chapoutier, La Combe Pilate 2017, Rhône, France

Silver medal winner

Team leader Jade Koch found ‘a honeyed, juicy, slightly effervescent wine with notes of tea and honey; overall very pretty wine’.

£11.60 Mentzendorff & Co

Ogier, Clos de l'Oratoire Blanc 2017, Rhône, France

Silver medal winner

‘Delicate aromas of yellow flowers with chestnut and stone fruit fill the nose. The palate has a touch of creamy yoghurt with peach, apple and melon. Very easy to drink with a rich fruit profile and good length,’ said Heesoo Kang of Flat Three Restaurant.

£29.43 Matthew Clark

Ferraton, Côtes-du-Rhône Samorëns Blanc 2017, Rhône, France

Silver medal winner

Team leader Tom Forrest noted: ‘A pale lemon-coloured wine, with russet apple and mineral notes on the nose and a touch of cooked ham. The palate is nicely oily, with flavours of lemon and apples and a good steely finish.’

£8.90 Berkmann Wine Cellars

Domaine de la Janasse, Côtes du Rhône Blanc 2017, Rhône, France

Bronze medal winner

‘Aromatic notes of grapefruit, mandarin, apricot yoghurt and a touch of lychee follow through to a nicely textured palate; good acidity keeps everything well balanced,’ said 28-50 Wine Workshop & Kitchen’s Melania Battiston.

£12.53 Enotria&Coe

Dumazet, Condrieu Rouelle Midi 2015, Rhône, France

Bronze medal winner

‘Intense golden colour, with pronounced aromatics,’ said Sexy Fish’s Julien Sahut, adding: ‘Stone fruit and tropical notes of orange peel plus a smoky note of toasted almonds. The plate is rich and oily with cooked apricot and a spicy finish that would be great with food.’

£29.49 Bibendum

Domaine Brusset, Les Travers Blanc, Cairanne 2017, Rhône, France

Commended medal winner

£12.92 Enotria&Coe

Domaine de la Janasse, Châteauneuf-du-Pape Blanc 2017, Rhône, France

Commended medal winner

£33.54 Enotria&Coe

Domaine de la Janasse, Viognier, Principauté d'Orange 2018, Rhône, France

Commended medal winner

£14.65 Enotria&Coe

Domaine Andre Brunel, La Bécassonne, Côtes du Rhône Blanc 2017, Rhône, France

Commended medal winner

Ferraton, Saint-Joseph, La Source Blanc 2017, Rhône, France

Commended medal winner

Jean-Luc Colombo, Les Collines de Laure, Blanc 2017, Rhône, France

Commended medal winner