Northern wine winners at the People’s Choice Wine Awards

picture of people's choice wine awards winners

Scoffing on pizza; tasting a long line of wines chosen by the people whilst watching a comedian juggling guitars. Welcome to The People’s Choice Wine Awards. This is not the norm for awards nights in the wine industry but then neither is it the norm to have a national wine competition born in the North. A refreshing change all round and far removed from the sit down black-tie gala dinners we have become accustomed too.

THE People’s Wine Choice Awards, the brainchild of Janet Harrison, PR consultant and owner of Cracking Wine, was aptly held in the Comedy Store in downtown Manchester on Monday 3 February 2020.

These awards are a rebel against blind tastings full of wine professionals choosing wines they think the public want to drink. Now in its third year, consumer judges travelled from literally all around the world to be at the judging session back in October.

“We were staggered to receive over 300 applications to be amateur judges this time and it was such a hard job to narrow the list down to the 100 people who finally took part, “ said Harrison.

“A lady travelled from Vietnam, one came from Romania and another from France, as well as others from across the UK. It’s fantastic to see so much love and enthusiasm for the competition.”

Comedian Steven Royle had everyone in fits of laughter: “Women who make wine award picked up by head sommelier at Henrock by Simon Rogan Charles Carron-Brow? Okay then, its 2020 after all,” he said.

picture of steve royle the comedian juggling guitars
Picture courtesy of

Whilst BBC food and drink presenter Kate Goodman, owner of Reserve Wines in the North West and Amelia Singer from The Wine Show gave out the fabulous limited edition awards created by the legendary Private Eye cartoonist Tony Husband.

picture of Tony Husband signing cartoonsNorthern winners

Northern based Booths supermarket won ‘supermarket of the year,’ beating the likes of Co-op, Aldi, Lidl, M&S and Waitrose to this prestigious accolade. They were voted for by consumers online.

The Co-op scooped three awards, including Best Champagne, Back to Nature (for organic & bio-dynamic wines) and Boxing Clever for their Fairtrade Argentine Red Blend.

The Whalley Wine Shop, Lancashire, was voted ‘Best Independent Retailer.’

Finalist wines were lined up all along the bar for guests to try. Forest of Bowland’s Goosnargh Gin was served as the welcoming drink. Food, served buffet style, included bakes from Kendal-based Ginger Bakers, cheese from New Market Dairy in Altrincham and bites from Manchester institution, Yang Sing.

The Wine Show’s Joe Fattorini and Amelia Singer took part in the PCWA podcast ‘Open up & Pour’, produced by Manchester based Dap Dip Podcast Production, founded by Guy Kilty from BBC 5 Live’s Wake up to Money.

picture of wine show joe fattorini, tom holt from wine passion Amelia singer holding the award
Wine Show’s Amelia Singer, Joe Fattorini, Tom Holt (Paso-Primer winemaker) and Kate Goodman

Guests were entertained by shortlisted videos from winemakers in Australia, South Africa, Spain, Austria and English wine makers, Ridgeview.

The finalist and winning films are now on the PCWA You Tube channel and will also feature on The Wine Show’s You Tube channel.

You can watch the videos here.

The winning wines will be available to taste at two events organised by The Wine Gang in Leeds and London.

They are also available to view here with stockists links:

Winners and Categories

Mindful Drinking
Moscato d’Asti, Elio Perrone, 2018, submitted by: The Wine Society

Fabulous Fizz – Sparkling Wine Rest of the World
Graham Beck Brut Rosé NV, Graham Beck, NV
Submitted by: Bibendum

Fabulous Fizz – Sparkling Wine (UK)
Sparkling Brut Rosé, Lyme Bay Winery, Non-vintage
Submitted by: The Lyme Bay Winery

Fabulous Fizz – Best Champagne
Les Pionniers NV Champagne Brut, Piper Heidsieck,
Submitted by: Co-op

Girls Night In
Bird in Hand Rose, Bird in Hand, 2019
Submitted by: Seckford Agencies

The Great Outdoors
Vandra Sauvignon Blanc, Boutinot, 2018
Submitted by: Boutinot

Food Friendly Wines – White for Easy Weekday Meals
Paul Schaafsma of Benchmark Drinks picks up Sir Ian Botham’s award
Botham 76 Series Margaret River Chardonnay 2018, Botham Wines, 2017
Submitted by: Benchmark Drinks Ltd

Food Friendly Wines – White for Aromatic/Asian Cuisine
The Society’s Exhibition Alsace Gewurztraminer, Famille Hugel, 2015
Submitted by: The Wine Society

Unsigned Talent – White
Jacques Chaput Brut Tradition, Champagne Jacques Chaput, 2014+2015
Submitted by: Champagne Jacques Chaput

Treat Yourself – White (two winners)
La Penombre Blanc, Sud de France, Arte Potendi, 2018
Submitted by: Arte Potendi
McGuigan The Shortlist Adelaide Hills Chardonnay, 20
Submitted by: Australian Vintage

War of the Rosés
Casillero del Diablo Rosé, Casillero del Diablo, 2018
Submitted by: Concha y Toro UK

Boxing Clever
Co-op Fairtrade Argentine Red Blend, La Riojana, 2018
Submitted by: Kingsland Drinks

Bargain Buys
Paparuda Pinot Grigio, SC Cramele Recas SA, 2018
Submitted by: SC Cramele Recas SA

Not your typical wine awards night…
Back to Nature
Co-op Fairtrade Irresistible Organic Malbec, La Riojana Co-operative, NV
Submitted by: Co-op

Vegan Friendly
Double Canyon Cabernet Sauvignon Horse Heaven Hills, Double Canyon, 2016
Submitted by: Double Canyon

Food Friendly Wines – Red for Easy Weekday Meals
Wakefield Taylors Shiraz, Wakefield Taylors Wines, 2018
Submitted by: Wakefield Taylors Wines

Pass the Crackers
The Society’s Saar Riesling, Reichsgraf von Kesselstatt, 2017
Submitted by: The Wine Society

One Man and His BBQ
Graham Norton’s Own Shiraz, Invivo & Co, 2017
Submitted by: INVIVO & Co

Unsigned Talent – Red
Vigne Vigne 50, Vinchio Vaglio Serra, 2016
Submitted by: Vinchio-Vaglio Serra

Food Friendly Wines – Red for Hearty Meals
Wakefield Taylors Cabernet Sauvignon, Wakefield Taylors Wines, 2018
Submitted by: Wakefield Taylors Wines

Treat Yourself – Red
Booths Gran Norte Rioja Reserva, Booths, 2012
Submitted by: Booths

Sweets for my Sweet
Hermits Hill Botrytis Semillon, De Bortoli, 2016
Submitted by: Marks and Spencer

Heavy Duty
Rare Pedro Ximenez, Lustau, NV
Submitted by: Marks and Spencer

Women who make wine
Double Canyon Cabernet Sauvignon Horse Heaven Hills, Double Canyon, 2016
Submitted by: Double Canyon

Out of The Ordinary
Darling Cellars Chocoholic Pinotage, Darling Cellars, 2017
Submitted by: Seckford Agencies

Supermarket of the Year
On-line Retailer of the Year

The Wine Society
Independent Retailer of the Year
The Whalley Wine Shop

Wine Passion: The Story Behind the Label
Paso Primero.


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