Being Swedish we have to write about this of course. Rickard Enkvist is from Sweden but lives in the small village of Gaucin in the mountains above Malaga on the Spanish south coast. Some years back he bought a vineyard and became winemaker under the scorching Andalusian sun. This year two of his wines won Gold Medals in the Concours Mondial wine competition – one of the world’s leading competitions for wine.
Almost 7000 wines competed for medals this year (as we wrote in the last Brief) and around one third wins medals: Great Gold, Gold or Silver. In the press release from Enkvist he proudly announces that two of his wines, Suenos (“dreams”) and Ultimo Suenos from his Cezar Vinedos y Bodega were awarded Gold Medals in the category red wines from Andalusia.
That, however, is not quite correct, which gives us a reason to explain a bit more how the Concours works. (We should know, both Britt and Per were in the jury). All wines are tasted completely blind; there is no grouping of the wines presented to the judges. Similar wines are tasted together in groups but the judges do not know what the groups are. Thus, the judges taste the wines in a completely “neutral” context and have to judge the wines by their intrinsic qualities, not according to some pre-conceived idea of what a certain type of wine should be.
Therefore, there is no such “category” as red Andalusian wines (which might be just as good, it could have been very easy to win a medal in that category…). In other words the Suenos wines won their medals in competition with other wines from all over the world, which in our opinion is a much greater achievement than being a Gold Medal winner in Andalusia (there were 12 Andalusian wines that were awarded medals, mostly sherries).
So, congratulations to Mr Enquist! Overall Spain came second in terms of the number of medals awarded (and first if you count only Great Gold Medals): 17 Great Golds, 136 Golds, and 225 Silver, with 1394 wines (and spirits) from Spain. The biggest medal winner was France: 14 Great Golds, 191 Golds, 401 Silvers, with 2277 competing products.
This post is also available in: Swedish