All can finally be revealed. The winning wines in the first-ever Wine Merchant Top 50 competition are listed here.
Why did we choose them? Well, we didn’t. Every wine was tasted and re-tasted by a panel of independent wine merchants – the people who sell them. As far as we know, this is the first and only wine competition to let retailers have complete control over the judging (though we’re grateful to Olly Smith and David Williams for chairing the proceedings and ensuring there was consistency and fairness throughout).
From the start, the rule was that only 50 wines could win. Inevitably that means that some excellent wines missed out. We’re the first to admit that on another day, with a different set of judges, we’d have some different names among the winners. Wine is subjective: if it wasn’t, every merchant in the country would list the same products.
But we’re delighted with the line-up of winners that emerged. As a snapshot of the diversity available in the independent trade – and as a guide to what would make a useful addition to any independent’s range – we reckon we’ve got all the bases covered. Congratulations to all our winners.