Sportsmen win coveted wine awards

ginola1.jpg The French former footballer David Ginola has won a coveted silver award for his Coste Brulade rosé at the International Wine Challenge, the world cup of wine-tasting events, at the London International Wine Fair. The judges praised its “gentle strawberry fruit flavours with a hint of minerality”. They also commended two of his other bottles. Read more…

The retired winger is hoping his rosé – created after three years of research – can raise the profile of Provence, traditionally overshadowed by France’s other great wine-growing regions.
For the Challenge, about 400 judges assessed nearly 10,000 wines from 39 countries, the highest number since the competition began. France took the most golds with 60, followed by Australia with 48 and Portugal with 30. Twenty-two went to New Zealand (up from 15 in 2007). Argentina is tipped as the one to watch – this year it doubled its gold medal haul to 8.
Ginola’s win cemented the rising credibility of wines produced by celebrities. Among the other IWC award-winners was the South African golfer Ernie Els, who took three silvers for his Stellenbosch Bordeaux-style reds – the 2004 Ernie Els, (praised for its “big fruit oak nose”), the 2006 Cirrus (“ripe crunchy berries”), and Lapa Cabernet Sauvignon (“woody but well integrated”).
Film director Francis Ford Coppola, who has a vineyard in California, received a commendation for his Diamond Collection Red Label Zinfandel.
— Sandra Westbrooke

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