iwsc wines of the year
Handpicked by IWSC
Wine Handpicked by IWSC 15 December 2021

Top 40 wines from the IWSC 2021

From Champagne to sherry, judges at the IWSC tasted their way through a diverse mix of wine styles and regions to name the wines of the year - read on for the top 40 wines of 2021
Introduction and recommendations by
Club Oenologique Editors & IWSC judges

Just last month, the IWSC (International Wine and Spirit Competition) named its wine producers and products of the year. The list of trophy winners provided a snapshot of wine trends, as well as flagging up some key bottles to seek out, and the winemakers well worth keeping an eye on.

But with such a diversity of wine entered into the competition this year, we thought it made sense to take a look beyond the trophies in order to deliver a list of 40 of the highest-scoring wines from around the world.

bottle of nyetimber blanc de blancs plus sparkling wine in flutes
Nyetimber's Blanc de Blancs was among a cluster of English sparkling wines to score gold at the IWSC 2021

In the IWSC’s top 40 wines of 2021, you’ll find a strong showing of port, sweet and fortified wines – just in time for some last-minute Christmas shopping. Of course, you’ll find Champagne on the list, but there’s also a handful of English sparkling wines in the top 40, proving that the relatively youthful style is continuing on its ascent. And in terms of fellow wine regions on the rise, you’ll find a rosé from China and an orange wine from Georgia in the list below, too.

The wines in this top 40 all picked up a gold medal from the IWSC 2021, with northern hemisphere judging carried out in the spring and medals for southern hemisphere wines dished out in the autumn. To decide on which wines were worthy of a gold, a full suite of expert judges who work within the industry blind-tasted their way through styles from across hundreds of regions before scoring each wine out of 100; to achieve a gold medal, wines had to score 95 points and up.

So, without further ado, dive into the best wines of 2021 according to the IWSC.

The top 40 wines from the IWSC 2021

  1. Sogevinus Fine Wines, Kopke Colheita 1957; Portugal. 98/100
  2. Emilio Lustau, Oloroso VORS NV; Spain. 98/100
  3. Nyetimber, Blanc de Blancs Brut 2013 (Magnum); England, West Sussex. 97/100
  4. Rare, Champagne Brut 2008; France, Champagne. 97/100
  5. G.D.Vajra, Lagarbiana 2016; Italy, Piedmont, Barolo. 97/100
  6. Famille Carabello-Baum 2018; France, Burgundy, Corton Grand Cru. 97/100
  7. Peller Estates Winery, Andrew Peller Signature Series Riesling Icewine 2019; Canada, Niagara Peninsula. 97/100
  8. Sogrape Vinhos, Sandeman 20 Year Old Tawny NV; Portugal. 97/100
  9. Sogevinus Fine Wines, Kopke Colheita 1978; Portugal. 97/100
  10. Williams & Humbert, Dos Cortados Aged 20 Years Palo Cortado VOS NV; Spain. 97/100
  11. Emilio Lustau, Palo Cortado VORS NV; Spain. 97/100
  12. Campbells Merchant, Prince Rare Muscat NV; Australia, Rutherglen. 97/100
  13. Palmer & Co, Brut 2012; France, Champagne. 96/100
  14. Court Garden, Ditchling Quartet Brut 2014. England, East Sussex. 96/100
  15. De Saint-Gall, Orpale Grand Cru Blanc de Blancs Brut 2008; France, Champagne. 96/100
  16. Roger Goulart, Josep Valls Gran Reserva Extra Brut 2014; Spain, Cava. 96/100
  17. Petaluma, Chardonnay 2019; Australia, South Australia, Piccadilly Valley. 96/100
  18. Eddystone Point Chardonnay 2019; Australia, Tasmania. 96/100
  19. Mád, One 2018; Hungary, Tokaj. 96/100
  20. Castelli, Il Liris Chardonnay 2019; Australia, Western Australia, Denmark. 96/100
  21. Sella & Mosca, Monteoro 2019; Italy, Sardinia, Vermentino Di Gallura. 96/100
  22. Teliani Valley JSC, Glekhuri Rkatsiteli Qvevri 2019; Georgia, Kakheti. 96/100
  23. Corte Canella 2015; Italy, Veneto, Amarone Della Valpolicella. 96/100
  24. Takahata Winery, Arkadia Select Harvest Cabernet Sauvignon-Merlot 2017; Japan, Yamagata. 96/100
  25. Les Domaines Paul Mas, Château de Crès Ricards Stécia 2019; France, Languedoc-Roussillon, Terrasses Du Larzac. 96/100
  26. La Togata, Dei Togati 2016; Italy, Tuscany, Brunello Di Montalcino. 96/100
  27. Castello Vicchiomaggio, La Prima 2017; Italy, Tuscany, Chianti Classico Gran Selezione. 96/100
  28. Tenuta San Giorgio, Brumanera 2015. Italy, Veneto, Piave Malanotte. 96/100
  29. Church Road, McDonald Series Syrah 2019; New Zealand, Hawke’s Bay. 96/100
  30. Vilafonté, Series C 2007; South Africa, Western Cape, Paarl. 96/100
  31. Origin Wine, Tesco Finest Shiraz 2020; South Africa, Swartland. 96/100
  32. Dopff Au Moulin, Gewurztraminer 2019; France, Alsace, Brand – Grand Cru. 96/100
  33. Inniskillin, Niagara Cabernet Franc Icewine 2019; Canada, Niagara Peninsula. 96/100
  34. Weingut Rabl, Riesling 2017; Austria, Niederösterreich. 96/100
  35. Quady Winery, Essensia Orange Muscat 2019; USA, California, Madera. 96/100
  36. Twill Cellars, Chardonnay 2018; USA, Oregon, Willamette Valley. 95/100
  37. Hua Guo Ri Wines (Beijing) Ltd., Art Series Rosé 2019; China, Shandong. 95/100
  38. Kavaklidere Saraplari, Prestige Bogazkere 2018; Turkey, Eastern Anatolia. 95/100
  39. Richard Bruno, Petite Sirah 2018; USA, California, Clarksburg. 95/100
  40. Stoneleigh, Rapaura Series Sauvignon Blanc 2020; New Zealand, Rapaura. 95/100
Rutherglen muscat in the glass with a cheesboard
Plenty of fortified wines came out on top at the IWSC 2021, including Campbell's Prince Rare Muscat NV, made in Rutherglen, Australia

HOW DO WE JUDGE THESE WINES?

We run a tightly structured, rigorous wine tasting process. That means that each wine sample is pre-poured into numbered glasses and assessed blindly by the judges. Most importantly, our IWSC wine judges are experts in their field, who work across all sectors of the wine industry. For evidence, see our full list of judges.

HOW DO WE SCORE THESE WINES?

Only the best wines sampled receive a Gold or Silver award. For example, to win Gold, wines have to score between 95 and 100 points. Meanwhile, Silver wines range from 90 to 94 points. Click here to read more on our scoring system.

MORE FROM CLUB OENOLOGIQUE

Club O is an exclusive community and the go-to platform for wine and spirit lovers. Our flagship Club Oenologique magazine offers even more insights for enthusiasts and collectors. Based in London, our editorial team tells informative, inspirational stories from the world of wine and spirits, gastronomy and travel, as well as covering recommendations and the latest trends in drink. You can take a look at our Explained series, for instance, where we’re tackling grape varieties, regions and styles of wine and spirits. Alternatively, visit our Ask the Sommelier section, where experts answer your wine-related questions.

Top Rated Bottles

The top 40 wines from the IWSC 2021

Sogevinus Fine Wines, Kopke Colheita 1957 1957

Port
  • RRP £325
Kopke Colheita 1957
Learn More

Emilio Lustau, Oloroso VORS NV

Jerez-Xérès-Sherry DOC
  • RRP £64.95
Oloroso VORS
Learn More

Nyetimber, Blanc de Blancs Brut (Magnum) 2013

England
  • RRP £99.90
Blanc de Blancs Brut  (Magnum)
Learn More

Rare, Brut 2008

Champagne
  • RRP £155
Brut
Learn More

G.D.Vajra, Lagarbiana 2016

Barolo DOCG
  • RRP £30
Lagarbiana
Learn More

Famille Carabello-Baum 2018

Corton Grand Cru
Famille Carabello-Baum
Learn More

Peller Estates Winery, Andrew Peller Signature Series Riesling Icewine 2019

Niagara Peninsula
Andrew Peller Signature Series Riesling Icewine
Learn More

Sogrape Vinhos, Sandeman 20 Year Old Tawny NV

Port
  • RRP £38.90
Sandeman 20 Year Old Tawny
Learn More

Sogevinus Fine Wines, Kopke Colheita 1978 1978

Port
  • RRP £118
Kopke Colheita 1978
Learn More

Williams & Humbert, Dos Cortados Aged 20 Years Palo Cortado VOS NV

Jerez-Xérès-Sherry DOC
  • RRP £24.95
Dos Cortados Aged 20 Years Palo Cortado VOS
Learn More

Emilio Lustau, Palo Cortado VORS NV

Jerez-Xérès-Sherry DOC
  • RRP £80.95
Palo Cortado VORS
Learn More

Campbells, Merchant Prince Rare Muscat NV

Victoria
Merchant Prince Rare Muscat
Learn More

Palmer & Co, Brut 2012

Champagne
  • RRP £50
Brut
Learn More

Court Garden, Ditchling Quartet Brut 2014

England
  • RRP £34.40
Ditchling Quartet Brut
Learn More

De Saint-Gall, Orpale Grand Cru Blanc de Blancs Brut 2008

Champagne
  • RRP £666 (case of six)
Orpale Grand Cru Blanc de Blancs Brut
Learn More

Roger Goulart, Josep Valls Gran Reserva Extra Brut 2014

Spain
Josep Valls Gran Reserva Extra Brut
Learn More

Petaluma, Chardonnay 2019

South Australia
Chardonnay
Learn More

Eddystone Point, Chardonnay 2019

Tasmania
Chardonnay
Learn More

Mád, One 2018

Tokaj
One
Learn More

Castelli, Il Liris Chardonnay 2019

Western Australia
Il Liris Chardonnay
Learn More

Sella & Mosca, Monteoro 2019

Sardinia
Monteoro
Learn More

Teliani Valley JSC, Glekhuri Rkatsiteli Qvevri 2019

Kakheti
Glekhuri Rkatsiteli Qvevri
Learn More

Corte Canella 2015

Veneto
Corte Canella
Learn More

Takahata Winery, Arkadia Select Harvest Cabernet Sauvignon-Merlot 2017

Yamagata
Arkadia Select Harvest Cabernet Sauvignon-Merlot
Learn More

Les Domaines Paul Mas, Château de Crès Ricards Stécia 2019

Terrasses Du Larzac
Château de Crès Ricards Stécia
Learn More

La Togata, Dei Togati 2016

Brunello di Montalcino DOCG
Dei Togati
Learn More

Castello Vicchiomaggio, La Prima Gran Selezione 2017

Chianti Classico DOCG
La Prima Gran Selezione
Learn More

Tenuta San Giorgio, Bruma Nera 2015

Malanotte del Piave DOCG
Bruma Nera
Learn More

Church Road, McDonald Series Syrah 2019

Hawke's Bay
McDonald Series Syrah
Learn More

Vilafonté, Series C 2007

Paarl
Series C
Learn More

Origin Wine, Tesco Finest Shiraz 2020

Swartland
Tesco Finest Shiraz
Learn More

Dopff Au Moulin, Gewurztraminer Brand 2019

Alsace Grand Cru AOP
  • RRP £29
Gewurztraminer Brand
Learn More

Inniskillin Niagara, Cabernet Franc Icewine 2019

Niagara Peninsula
  • RRP £87.90
Cabernet Franc Icewine
Learn More

Weingut Rabl, Riesling 2017

Kamptal DAC
Riesling
Learn More

Quady Winery, Essensia Orange Muscat 2019

Madera
  • RRP £14.99
Essensia Orange Muscat
Learn More

Twill Cellars, Chardonnay 2018

Willamette Valley AVA
  • RRP £38.78
Chardonnay
Learn More

Penglai Longting Vineyard Co., Art Series Summer 2019

Shandong
Art Series Summer
Learn More

Kavaklidere Saraplari, Prestige Boğazkere 2018

Eastern Anatolia
Prestige Boğazkere
Learn More

Richard Bruno, Petite Sirah 2018

Clarksburg
Petite Sirah
Learn More

Stoneleigh, Rapaura Series Sauvignon Blanc 2020

Rapaura
Rapaura Series Sauvignon Blanc
Learn More

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