The TAJ Classic Wine Trophy Results 2014

The splendid Taj Hotel Cape Town, in association with La Revue du VIN de France, Tonnellerie Claude Gillet, DORRANCE Wines, GQ South Africa and Tonnellerie Darnajou hosted the 16th edition of the TAJ Classic Wine Trophy, from 3rd to 7th March 2014. An experienced panel of French judges, committed to upholding the highest standards in this unique celebration of South African wine, sought to recognize, reward and promote elegance, balance, finesse, ageability and sense of place achieved by vignerons in South Africa.

The panel, under the auspices of Olivier POELS, editor and managing partner of La Revue du VIN de France, comprised: 

Olivier POUSSIER, the best sommelier in the world winner, wine consultant, writer and group sommelier of Lenôtre; Claude GILOIS, well-known French wine writer, consultant and wine blogger; Philippe DIETRICH, winemaker and director of Michael Petzold Wine Services; Christophe DURAND, Taj Classic Wine Trophy organizer and proprietor of DORRANCE Wines; Jean-Yves MULLER, co-owner of Sotano and Petit Caveau restaurants; Germain LEHODEY, sommelier of Mosaic restaurant.

Judges in panels of three, over three rounds, blind tasted all entrants in 23 categories to select a shortlist, which was re-tasted blind by all judges in the Grand Finale. Only 19 of those wines were awarded a coveted Bacchus Trophy, by Master of Ceremonies, Neil Pendock on 7th March 2014 in the St Georges Room of the lovely Taj Hotel Cape Town.

Bacchus Trophy winners will be listed in La Revue du VIN de France 2014 and promoted at Salon de La Revue du  VIN de France in Paris in May 2014.

The list of winners were as follows:

Bubbly and White Wines

• Villiera Monro Brut 2008

• De Morgenzon Chenin Blanc Reserve 2013

• Hamilton Russell Chardonnay 2012

• Hamilton Russell Chardonnay 2013

• Whalehaven Chardonnay 2012

• Groot Constantia Chardonnay 013

• Chamonix Chardonnay Reserve 2012


• Creation Pinot Noir 2012

• Whalehaven Merlot 2011

• Glen Carlou Grand Classique 2011

• Bellingham The Bernard Series Small Barrel SMV 2012

• Creation Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Petit Verdot 2010

• La Motte Pierneef Shiraz Viognier 2011

• Groot Constantia Gouverneur Reserve 2011

• Morgenster 2010

• Morgenster 2003

• Delaire Graff Botmaskop 2012

• The High Road Classique 2010

• Rudera Noble Late Harvest 2010

The prize for the Most Iconic Entry for 2014 was shared between Morgenster and Hamilton Russell Vineyards who shared a pair of new barriques sponsored by distinguished coopers Tonnellerie Claude Gillet and Tonnellerie Darnajou.

Before the results were revealed, a panel of South African judges selected six wines from the Bacchus Trophy winners that presented the best overall value for readers of GQ South Africa and patrons of the Taj Hotel Cape Town. The awarded wines will be showcased in GQ South Africa and served in the Taj Hotel Cape Town over the month of July 2014. The Taj/GQ Wine selection was decided by a panel of: Jonathan STEYN – OIV MSC in Wine Management and Tasting Academy Graduate; Christian EEDES – Editor and owner of and prominent wine judge; Craig TYSON – Editor GQ magazine South Africa; Michael POWNELL – Group General Manager of Taj Cape Town; Tatiana MARCETTEAU – Sommelier at TAJ Cape Town;

• Whalehaven Chardonnay 2012

• Groot Constantia Chardonnay 2013

• Chamonix Chardonnay Reserve 2012

• Delaire Graff Botmaskop 2012

• Glen Carlou Grand Classique 2011

• Whalehaven Merlot 2011

The Classic Wine Trophy Team wish to congratulate all the winners and look forward to another successful event in 2015. We also wish to thank all our partners and sponsors, without whom this would not have been possible. Get all the details on the 2014 competition at

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