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Published:  23 July, 2008

Coyam 2001 - an organic blend of Merlot, Carmenre and Cabernet from Viedos Orgnicos Emiliana - was the overall winner of the first annual Wines of Chile Awards, which were held in Santiago just before Christmas. More than 400 wines were entered by wineries from all over Chile, with the judges - a team of top UK and Chilean experts - awarding 23 gold medals, 37 silvers, and 141 bronzes. The best-performing wine style was blended red, which accounted for nearly a third of all the gold medals awarded. Sauvignon Blanc, particularly from Casablanca, was the most successful white, while organic reds and Cabernet Sauvignons were in top form. The judges were also impressed by the significant improvement in the quality of the Carmenre entries. The trophy winners were: 2001 Viedos Orgnicos Emiliana, Coyam - Best of Show; 2001 Concha y Toro Marqus de Casa Concha, Cabernet Sauvignon - Best-Value Red; 2003 Via Ventisquero, Yali Sauvignon Blanc Reserve - Best-Value White; 2003 Via Chocalan, Cabernet Sauvignon - Cabernet Sauvignon Trophy; 2002 Via Casa Silva, Doa Dominga Reserva Carmenre - Carmenre Trophy; 2003 Via Altair, Tabal Reserve Chardonay - Chardonnay Trophy; 2001 Via Echeverria, Late Harvest Special Selection Sauvignon Blanc - Late Harvest Trophy; Via La Rosa, 2002 Don Reca Limited Release, Merlot - Merlot Trophy; 2001 Via Cono Sur, 20 Barrels Pinot Noir - Pinot Noir Trophy; 2001 Viedos Orgnicos Emiliana, Coyam - Red Blend Trophy; 2003 Via Ventisquero, Yali Sauvignon Blanc Reserve - Sauvignon Blanc Trophy; 2002 Via Altair, Tabal Reserve Shiraz - Syrah/Shiraz Trophy. The judges included Jancis Robinson MW, former Harpers editor Tim Atkin MW, Oddbins' former head buyer Steve Daniel, Robert Joseph and Neil Tully MW.