What is the SAKURA AWARDS?
The largest Wine competition in Asia

Message from Yumi Tanabe, president of “SAKURA” Japan Women’s Wiine Awards

田辺由美

Japan Women’s Wine Awards, which aims to “find wines that go well with Japanese home cooking,” “increase wine consumption,” and “promote women working in the wine industry,” received a record 4,652 entries from 25 countries this year.

This shows the high expectations producers have for the Japanese market. With the expansion of consumption, the number of occasions to enjoy wine at home is on the rise.

The “Sakura Award winning medal sticker” on wine bottles in stores is a sign of good wine selected by Japanese female judges, and the evaluation of the wine as “suitable for home cooking and reassuring” is increasing year by year.

Japan Women’s Wine Awards will continue to take on new challenges and move forward into the future.

 

Trade Only - Female Blind Judging Panel

審査会This competition has been judged exclusively by female wine specialists, namely sommeliers, winemakers, wine school educators, journalists, restaurant and beverage directors, retail store buyers, importers and distributors.

The 9th “SAKURA” Japan Women’s Wine Awards

In 2022, the total entry of 4,652 wines were received from 25 countries, the largest number ever! This unique competition evaluating wine from around the world from a woman’s perspective has garnered interest globally and has set a new precedent for wine competitions.

The 100 point scale was used for selecting Double Gold, Gold and Silver medals.

Result 2022

“SAKURA” Japan Women’s Wine Awards
About the Awards/Mission/Judges

medal

About the Awards – The largest wine competition in Asia

The “SAKURA” Awards started its history in 2014 as the first international wine competition judged solely by women in Japan. Chaired by Yumi Tanabe, an active and leading wine educator in Japan, the competition has grown gradually and now become the largest and the most important wine competition in Asia with over 4,000 items entry from across the world. Our competition results always draw keen attention from both Japan and abroad, as it has encouraged the evolvement of new wine selection criteria from Japanese women’s perspective and further activation of wine culture and market in Japan is widely expected.

Please find more about Yumi Tanabe and Wine & Spirits Culture Association in “About us”

Mission – Focus on women’s voice in wine selection

ObjectOur mission consists of three pillars;

  • To select wines to go with Japanese home-cooking and Asian cuisine
  • To increase the annual wine consumption in Japan to 5 liters/person
  • To expand opportunities for women in the wine industry
In Japan, often times women lead to select wines. That’s why we believe wines judged and selected by female experts will lead to consumers’ trust and satisfaction. Aiming to push the boundary of wine market in Japan, our journey will continue in collaboration with you.

Judges – Female wine experts

ObjectOur judges are female experts who lead broad range of wine industries in Japan. Sommeliers, producers, school instructors, journalists, importers, distributors and sales, they are all active female professionals in wine industries.

Wine Category– 100 categories for evaluation

Categories at entry

  1. Still Red Wine
  2. Still White Wine
  3. Still Rose Wine
  4. Sparkling Wine and Semi Sparkling Wine
  5. Fortified Wine
  6. Sweet Wine

Pre-judging procedure

On arrival, entry wines are organized by varietals, production method and other attributes and put into around 100 categories.

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  • Sparkling wines, once grouped by varietals, are sorted also by carbonation level, residual sugar and production method.
  • Dessert wines and fortified wines are sorted by residual sugar and production method.

Judging

  • Scores will be marked out of 100. Double-Gold, Gold and Silver Awards will be given according to the designated scores for each award. Another round of tasting will be held to select Diamond Trophy from Double-Gold winning wines. For more details, please refer “Past Awards Results”
  • Only “varietal”, “vintage” , “residual suger” and “alcohol content” are disclosed for blind tasting.
  • Each flight usually consists of 10 to 14 items, sorted by varietals. We have adopted the individual scoring method and not comparative.
  • A judge assesses 50 to 60 items a day.
  • Bouchonne wines will be reassessed.

Award results

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  • As soon as the assessment is finalized, judging sheets will be submitted for calculation. Regardless of the category, Double-Gold, Gold and Silver winning wines are determined according to the average score.
  • The winners of Double-Gold, Gold and Silver will be announced on April 25th.
  • On April 28th, Diamond Trophy and Special Awards and Grand-prix will be announced.

Supporters – Embassies and Producers associations

Our effort to foster the wine culture is supported by many organizations, including embassies in Japan, wine producer’s associations, and other related organizations. Our activity reports are broadly disseminated to wine producers via these supporting organizations. To become our supporter is free of charge. Please refer “SUPPORTER” for more details.

Sales Partners– connect awarded wines to consumers

Sales PartnerMany wine distributors join us as registered sales partners and help promote the Award winning wines broadly with the full understanding of our activity. Through distribution, retail and whole sales, they are contributing the sales of the awarded wines throughout Japan. The registration is free of charge.

Restaurants – where you can enjoy awarded wines

You can enjoy the Award winning wines in many restaurants in Japan. They appreciate the value of our activities and put the Award winning wines on their wine lists. Any restaurants who provide customers with the awarded wines can register through our website, free of charge.

Award Medallion Seals

meedal logo

ObjectDiamond, Double Gold, Gold and Silver medal stickers are available through our partner company "TENPRINT., Ltd.". They help highlight the award that the wine has earned on the shelves and in various internet shopping sites.

Sales Parnters

Special Awards, Best Pairing Wine for Asian Cuisine, Grand-Prix

  • Best Woman Winemaker
  • “ROSE" Wine
  • Grand Prix Japanese Wine of the year
  • Best Cost Performance Wine
  • Great Value Sparkling Wine
  • Lesser-known Grape Varieties in Japanese market
  • "FORTIFIED" Wineイメージ
  • "DESSERT" Wine
  • Best Wine for Asian Cuisuine
    (Sushi, Tempura, Sukiyaki, Yakitori, Teppanyaki, Japanese Pot-Au-Feu, Korean, Chinese and Thai)

If you have any inquiry, please feel free to contact us.

Please click here for any comments or questions.

For the schedule and other detailed information, please refer here.

FAQ

Organizer

Wine and Spirits Culture Association
Yumi Tanabe, President

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