Well the 31st Diners Club Winemaker of the Year is now decided, although not even convener of the judging panel, Dave Hughes, knows who it is. Forty-four wines were tasted blind, having been reduced to this number from 110 submissions by an independent screening panel yesterday. A final round of the top scoring nine contained Bordeaux-style blends made by seven winemakers as two winemakers had two wines in the final nine.
Wines were scored out of 20 by seven judges and the winning wine had a total score 1.5 points larger than the second placed blend and was the favourite of a majority of tasters. Not surprising to report that the final nine contained wines by three previous Diners Club Winemakers of the Year. While judging wine blind is not rocket science, these kind of internal correlations add a warm feeling to the final result which will be revealed at a black-tie bash on November 26.
If anyone doubts that 2009 was the vintage of the millennium so far, the fact that six of the finalists were from this vintage adds further supporting evidence.