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Consejo Regulador of Rioja DOCa awards four new ambassadors

Published:  27 November, 2019

The Consejo Regulador of Rioja DOCa has awarded four new industry ambassadors in recognition of their commitment to Spain’s flagship wine region and supporting UK marketing activities.

Announced last night, this year’s Rioja Recognises winners are Fiona Beckett, Camino founder and MD Richard Bigg, The Sampler founder Dawn Mannis and head of buying at The Wine Society Pierre Mansour.

The ‘Communicator of the Year’ award went to Beckett, who has been a consistent champion of Rioja, writing several pieces about the region for her website and highlighting up-and-coming Rioja producers and developments in the region in for her regular column in The Guardian.

The ‘On-Trade Representative of the Year’ award went to Bigg, who oversees the wine portfolio across the Camino group, which now has five sites, always ensuring that Rioja plays a key role in the selection.

Mannis received the ‘Off-Trade Representative of the Year’ award for her continued efforts in highlighting Rioja producers in The Sampler’s wine list, including mature Rioja and rare vintages.

The ‘Outstanding Contribution’ award went to Mansour who is responsible for The Wine Society’s Spanish portfolio, which consistently receives accolades for the quality and depth of offering, including leading Rioja producers.

“Rioja is the UK’s favourite Spanish wine region, and Rioja Recognises is an opportunity for us to celebrate and thank key personalities who have played a part in keeping Rioja at the top,” said Iñigo Tapiador, director of global marketing for the Rioja DOCa.

The evening was hosted by Tim Atkin MW and held at Eneko Basque Kitchen & Bar in Covent Garden, the London outpost of Michelin-starred Basque Chef Eneko Atxa, with guests enjoying a selection of wines selected by the winners, alongside some of this year’s 10x10 winning wines and a menu curated for the event.