Categories & Prizes

Each category will be judged separately, and nominations will be vetted before judging to ensure they are relevant. The intention is to showcase the very best in wine content online, and rewarding those who invest their time to create this content. This is not just a pat on the shoulder, it is an incentive, and material support, to keep up the good work!

1st Prize

  • €500 cash prize
  • additional prizes determined by the category sponsor
The 2nd and 3rd place winners in each category will also be awarded prizes:
  • 2nd Place = €250 + prizes determined by the category sponsor
  • 3rd Place = €100 + prizes determined by the category sponsor

If you are interested in sponsoring one of the categories or the awards process, please contact us for more details.

Best Investigative / Journalistic Wine Story

for a distinguished example of investigative or traditional journalistic reporting
Format: written text

  • 1500 words or fewer
  • Should explore a specific subject dealing with some aspect of the wine industry
  • Should include references to sources
  • Must try to be fair reporting striving for accuracy, fairness, and disclosure of all essential facts without bias
  • Value will be given to the BDWA “Quality Criteria” with an emphasis on Research

In summary: This category should demonstrate the use of the online medium to explore interesting developments in the wine business, to expand readers’ knowledge of the world of wine, the activities of companies and individuals, and the developments occurring around the world.


Entries in this category should report on developments and news in the world of wine. This is not an educational category, and therefore not intended for scholarly content but rather to keep readers informed of the changing events, issues, and characters in the world of wine in order to empower the informed.


Investigative pieces should go beyond merely restating known facts in order to spread wine education, but research new information and go beyond textbooks and press releases to understand what is really happening. It will often, though not exclusively, take the form of “objective reporting” and may be technical information, business analysis, people profiles or trend analysis. This should be about a combination of primary research, analysis and original thinking.


In general, content in this category will be aimed at the wine business and those with some commercial connection to the business of wine.

Best Editorial / Opinion Wine Writing

for outstanding examples of wine writing, giving prime consideration to literary quality and originality
Format: written text

  • 1500 words or fewer
  • Exploring any aspect of wine from a personal point of view
  • May include personal opinions
  • Value will be given to the BDWA “Quality Criteria” with an emphasis on Clarity of Message and Originality

In summary: This is probably the broadest category, covering any written piece about wine that expresses the writer’s point of view (or at least does not require objective reporting).


The goal is to highlight the more original, entertaining, thought-provoking, and generally interesting writing. It should be original content or commentary, demonstrating a clear grasp of the subject matter, but also the needs of different audiences. This content should generally help to make sense of the wide world of wine, and give new ways to inform and entertain wine consumers everywhere. It should encourage readers to engage with the wine world in new ways.


This form of content often takes the form of essays such as blog posts, but could also include other forms (such as poetry, haiku, etc.).


In general audience for this content will be wine consumers, including but not limited to, those who have a commercial relationship with the wine business.

Best Tourism Content with a Focus on Wine

This is a broad category for content encouraging readers to learn about, visit and explore, specific geographical locations, where that content relates to that region’s link to wine. This can cover travel, history or the local music, food, art and other cultural context
Format: written text or video

  • 1500 words or fewer, 10 minutes or less if video
  • Exploring any aspect of tourism where this is linked to wine
  • May include personal opinions
  • Value will be given to the BDWA “Quality Criteria” with an emphasis on the Quality of Presentation

In summary: The entries in this category will not be judged so much on the format, but on their ability to communicate in an original, engaging and entertaining way about a location and its relationship with wine, thus hopefully motivating an audience to visit this location in future.


Generally speaking this will be about the quality of the message, the presentation of materials to bring the location to life via the web, and the use of the potential multi-media opportunities of the web. Judges will also be looking for the best ways to build a broader culture of wine by bringing together stories about travel, history, culture and geography with a wine theme, not just focusing on wine alone.

Best Wine Themed Video

Video content that educates, demonstrates, entertains or builds awareness for wine
Format: video

  • 10 minutes or less
  • Exploring any aspect of the wine industry in video format
  • May include personal opinions
  • Value will be given to the BDWA “Quality Criteria” with an emphasis on the Quality of Presentation

In summary: Video is a creative medium. It is not enough just to create content using moving images, but to use the potential of video to bring a wine story to life in a new way. This category aims to highlight the best use of video to deliver a message or story about wine, whether this is technical information and education, or entertainment and opinion.


The category is very broad, covering everything from documentary formats, to interactive experiences, animation, comedy, drama or simply video recordings of an event, however the judges will give most value to entries that present wine related stories in an original way and where the quality of the presentation, and therefore the clarity of the message, is high and there is a unique benefit to using video to deliver this particular message or story.

Best Wine Photo

for the best photo to express the theme of ‘Celebrating Wine Culture
Format: Photo

  • Up to 3 photos
  • Any subject or setting will be considered as long as this relates in some way to the theme of the category
  • Photos should not have been entered in other photo competitions
  • Value will be given to the originality, technical excellence, composition, overall impact, artistic merit and relevance to the category theme

In summary: If a picture is truly worth a thousand words, then this photo should eloquently convey a message to the viewer on the topic of the category theme (which will vary between editions). Many wine sites use images, but how many go beyond the simple representation of the objects to make a point?


There are many ways to interpret the concepts, and to convey the message behind them, but the judges will also be looking for visually attractive images that display photographic skill and artistry that underline the unique importance of quality photography in the wine communications mix.

Responsibility Award

A prize for the entry in ANY category of the 2016 BDWAbyWIM that best promotes the Culture of Wine and demonstrates the message of Responsibility & Moderation to its target audience
Format: n/a


In summary: The message of Responsibility is at the core of the Born Digital Wine Awards. We believe that communicators who create content are ambassadors for the world of wine with consumers, and play an important role in supporting a healthy wine culture and a sustainable business in the long term.


All BDWAbyWIM entries are judged according to criteria of their contribution to the Culture of Wine, and to Responsible communication. This award takes all this information across all categories to identify the entry that best demonstrates the principles we are striving for.


This award is presented by Wine in Moderation – Art de Vivre