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An Interview with International Wine Contest Bucharest,
Taking Place May 25th to 28th 2017

International Wine Contest Bucharest, May 25-28 2017

1. Please provide some background information about the International Wine Contest Bucharest (IWCB).
IWCB is now in its 14th edition. In 2011, the management team shifted to a new group that now includes Ph.D. student Daniela Paduraru, Ph.D. Catalin Paduraru and Ph.D. Professor Dan Boboc; all people with market and retail experience. ONVPV, the owner of the OIV license, delegated the task of organizing this competition to this professional crew.

IWCB is a VINOFED member since 2016. The competition takes place in Romania, an important wine market internationally, and is open to wines from all over the world.

2. What are the contest dates?
The competition takes place in Bucharest, between May 25th and 28th, 2017.

3. How did the contest get started?
IWCB was initiated by Ph.D. professor Valeriu V. Cotea, renowned specialist and Vice President of the oenology commission of the OIV since 2002. After a one year break in 2010, the current team was formed in 2011 and began building support and funding from volunteers and the private sector, maintaining complete impartiality vis-à-vis producers. Since this time, the competition has been growing year over year.

4. What is the IWCB's mission?
Our mission is to evaluate and rank quality wines in order to promote them in Romania and across the world. We strive to support wineries and new wines being produced around the globe by bringing them into the public eye.

5. What makes this contest special?
There are a few things that go into differentiating the IWCB:
  • IWCB is special by its extraordinary growth! The number of samples, as well as yearly improvements to the contest overall, have been spectacular.
  • We are the only OIV and VINOFED competition that does not charge for sample registration.
  • The IWCB was one of the first wine competitions to feature its own electronic judging and software.
  • We are one of the few competitions that uses judging panels made up of seven jurors.
  • The contest takes place in Romania, one of the few countries in the world that can expand plantations and has a growing consumption.
6. What kind of wines and from where can be entered? Who can enter?
We receive registrations from across the globe, including (but not limited to) New Zealand, Australia, the USA, Chile, China, Georgia and even Azerbaijan. Samples come from the southern reaches of South Africa, to the northern limits where Vitis Vinifera can thrive, including Poland and other cold countries.

Any producer, retailer or importer can send samples, as long as they can prove that the wine comes from Vitis Vinifera and belongs to a commercial batch. All of this, as we said, without taxes.

The large number of wine samples we receive coming from outside Romania?s borders proves the interest for this market and qualifies IWCB as a key to its access.

7. How do participants get their wines into the contest?
In short:
  • Enter on and carefully read the Rules and Regulations
  • Start the online registration or download the registration files for email registration
    ***The deadline for registration is the April 28th, 2017***
  • The organizing team checks the documents received and confirms via email
  • Participants send their samples to the address listed on the website
    ***The deadline to receive samples is May 5th, 2017***

8. Can you tell us about the awards and some of the previous editions' winners?
The gold medals were awarded to producers in countries with long histories in wine making, as well as to those with who have more recently joined in the international wine market. Winners thus included wines produced in classic Old World countries, as well as those from the New World, and even some from wine markets like the former Yugoslavia and other areas in Eastern Europe.

Today, quality wines are truly globalized, and we ought to show this to the wine lovers all over the world.

9. When and where will the awards be given this year?
The prizes are offered during the Gala we organize inside of an old palace in Bucharest, called Bragadiru Palace. We invite people from the industry, ambassadors, press seniors, governmental representatives, artists etc. It's the most important event in the community of wine, here in Romania, and takes place every year. For those who cannot be present, we send the prizes by courier.
10. Why do wine producers like your contest?
IWCB is an elite wine competition that takes place in a location with huge wine consumption potential (including not only Romania, but also Poland, Ukraine, Russia and Baltic countries). Moreover, Romanians are good tourists who, despite their wealth rank in the EU, spend more on entertainment than those from the West.

Last, but not least, I think that producers understood our effort and they appreciate the fact that IWCB asks no fees.

11. Can you tell us a little more about the judging processes?
Some samples are doubled up in order to ensure the precision and consistency of the judges. Also, before starting the tasting session, the calibration (mis en bouche) is done with international wines that are very highly ranked by recognized systems like Robert Parker, Wine Spectator, and other major competitions. Jurors coming from over 20 different countries are held to those same high standards.

12. Of what are you most proud?
We're extremely proud that we have continued to gain notoriety internationally. Oenologists, producers, sommeliers and other professional wine associations and organizations have contributed thanks, ideas and proposals that have helped to strengthen the contest over the years. We believe that we're on the right road to making IWCB one of the most important and influential wine competitions in the world.

13. Final thoughts?
We invite all the producers from all around the world to understand that the world economy has changed, and will never look like as it did before. The EAST offers OPPORTUNITY!

Waiting and inaction have to be replaced with pragmatism, courage, vision, openness. IWCB medals will help make that difference in conquering new markets.

International Wine Contest Bucharest
Phone (direct): +40 744 507 070