2nd November, 2015; Condé Nast Johansens is delighted to announce the winners of the Champagne Taittinger UK Wine List Awards 2016. The winners were announced at the 34th annual Johansens Awards for Excellence Dinner held at The May Fair Hotel, London.
THE OVERALL WINNER OF THE CONDÉ NAST JOHANSENS CHAMPAGNE TAITTINGER WINE LIST AWARD 2016 IS LIME WOOD, New Forest, Hampshire.
SECOND YEAR RUNNING – “AN ASTONISHING ACHIEVEMENT”
“They have carried it off for a second year as the overall winner and scored highly across all categories. This is a list that does what a wine list should do - entertain, educate and encourage experimentation. It is cutting edge, well presented, easy to read, offers a huge choice but at the same time is very user friendly and never intimidating. The ‘wine of the week’ told in a story format is a particular favourite. A veritable wine lover’s paradise providing the reader with lots of lovely unexpected encounters. An absorbing list and this year’s stand out winner.”
Overall winner finalists – Chewton Glen, Hampshire (“a terrific range with a desire to share their passion for wine with their guests”) and The Old Rectory Hotel, Devon (“a very likeable and straightforward list offering marvellous value for money ”)
CATEGORY AWARD WINNERS
Our four category award winners were selected from all entries. They are:
CATEGORY WINNER – Best Champagne List
The Atlantic Hotel, Jersey, Channel Islands. The judges commented “a lovely showcase; it’s a selection that cleverly introduces and explains the different houses with verticals of Champagne. Top marks!”
CATEGORY WINNER – Best Value For Money
Hazel Bank Country House, Borrowdale, Cumbria. The judges remarked “A user friendly and educational list that provides well-known names at very good prices – a quality much appreciated and commended in this day and age”
CATEGORY WINNER – Most Innovative and Exciting Wine List
Lime Wood, Lyndhurst, Hampshire. The judges described this as “Fine wines, wine of the week, international selection, organic and dynamic range, cutting edge… A top quality list with appetite”.
CATEGORY WINNER – Best Choice of Wine by the Glass
Chewton Glen, New Milton, Hampshire
The judges commented “This is an exceptional list that offers choice of wine by the glass, selection, size and category and prices to suit all occasions. The list is so friendly and encourages experimentation. A worthy winner!”
Each year, the judges look for elements of the lists that make them stand out. These are awarded special commendations – we present three this year as follows;
Educational Excellence – Saunton Sands Hotel, near Braunton, Devon
“This is a list that encourages the guest to be brave and experiment with their choices - with pleasing results! Plenty of helpful introductions, organisation and introduction by grape variety, food matching and all well priced. Well done”
Selection of English Wines – Ockenden Manor, Cuckfield, W. Sussex
“A clean succinct list that educates and introduces the diner to an array of diverse English sparkling and still wines, including showing off those produced locally (other hotels – take note!) Excellent!”
Excellent layout and presentation – The Grove, Chandlers Cross, Hertfordshire
“This is almost a Zen approach to a wine list. It evokes a blissful state of mind. With its lovely clean layout and well-chosen type face, there is nothing to distract from choosing the wine”.
Commenting on the entries, head judge Sarah Jane Evans, award winning wine and food writer and Master of Wine noted the even higher standard of entries this year. She commented that the judging panel had to work hard to find real areas of criticism. “Whatever the size of style of the business, we were looking for personality, for interesting promotions through the year, for value for money and importantly, for lists that were easy to read and communicated well with customers.”
The judges noted an increased online wine list presence amongst the entries – useful for customers planning their choice beforehand - as well as use of the Coravin and Perlage systems which open up an exciting choice and greater experimentation of fine wines and Champagne. “Offering a clear range of different styles by the glass and in different size options has to be an industry must now. There are a lot of establishments, big and small, giving customers an exciting choice. Anyone not doing this is missing a key opportunity”