The awards recognise and celebrate the best Business Class and First Class wines served by 35 of the world’s premier airlines including Singapore Airlines, British Airways, Air France, Qantas, Virgin Atlantic, Lufthansa and Cathay Pacific and they were presented by Charles Metcalfe, co-chairman of the International Wine Challenge.
Blind tastings took place in December at the Hilton London Metropole and each wine was scored by four judges – Metcalfe, his co-chairman at the IWC Peter McCombie, British Master of Wine, journalist, broadcaster and commentator Tim Atkin and renowned wine expert Oz Clarke.
The evening’s biggest winner was Singapore Airlines with three Gold medals for Best Overall Wine Cellar (the event’s premier award), Best First Class Cellar and Best Business Class Sparkling Wine (joint with Philippine Airlines) for Champagne Charles Heidsieck Brut Réserve.
SIA picked up four other awards on the night:
First Class Fortified/Dessert Wine – Taylor’s 20 Year Old Tawny Port (Silver)
First Class Sparkling Wine – Dom Perignon 2004 (Bronze)
Business Class Wine Cellar (Bronze)
Business Class Fortified/Dessert Wine – Taylor’s 10 Year Old Tawny Port (Bronze)
Singapore Airlines works with three world-acclaimed wine consultants, including British expert Oz Clarke, to select the in-flight wines. The wine panel tests up to 1,000 bottles a year and handpicks only the finest wines to serve on board.
The airline purchases Bordeaux wine four years in advance for Economy Class and 10 years in advance for First Class to ensure only the best is served to customers and over two million bottles of wine are served on-board every year.
There is also a growing number of fully trained and qualified cabin crew air sommeliers, who are able to advise customers on their inflight wine choices and can even organise impromptu tastings in Suites/First and Business Class.
To find out for yourself how good the wines and Champagnes are on Singapore Airlines, click here.