Champion Wine of Show – a stand out for Syrah and Hawke’s Bay

The Esk Valley Winemakers Reserve Gimblett Gravels Syrah 2010 won
Champion Wine of Show at the Hawke’s Bay Mercedes Benz Wine Awards last
night.


Over 400 wine lovers attended the spectacular awards night set in the Waikoko
Gardens at the Hawke’s Bay Showgrounds.

The judges said never before had they seen the complete expression of the
variety combine with all that truly represents Hawke’s Bay in a single glass.
Chief judge Rod McDonald said the region was recognised around the world for
producing exceptional Syrah – but this year’s Champion of Show had raised the
glass to a new and exciting level.

“Over the last few years, Syrah has been an evolving class with two definite
styles developing – the riper, fuller bodied, darker style and the more floral,
feminine combination, medium weight, perfumed and supple.
“This wine stood out as a combination of both – reflecting a true and complete
expression of the variety. It had a lovely floral lift and perfume along with a
dense, yet silky structure that made it the Champion Hawke’s Bay Syrah.”

Across all the Champion trophy winners, the line up was outstanding, he said.

“All these Trophy wines would stand out at any international wine show – which
is the context in which we are judging,” Mr McDonald said.

In looking at the classes that did not produce a champion wine this year, Mr
McDonald said it was important to recognise that in many cases, these varieties
are not as widely planted or produced.

“There are fewer plantings of these varieties in Hawke’s Bay, which is reflected
in our entries. What we need to ensure is that when awarding gold medals, these
wines would be at the top at any international show across the world,” he said.

Another highlight of the Show was the Museum Class with three wines winning
gold, which represented a high proportion of older wines coming through, he
said.

“This is an exciting category to watch as the number of golds grow each year, and
shows the depth, quality and ageability of what Hawke’s Bay is able to produce.
Champion Wine of Show

Esk Valley Winemakers Reserve Gimblett Gravels Syrah 2010
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Reserve Champion Wine of Show
Sacred Hill Brokenstone 2010
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Winery of the Year
Ash Ridge Wines
NZ Frost Fans - Best Export Wine of Show
Te Awa Cabernet Merlot 2009
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EIT - Best Student Wine
Andrew Yin Bao - Chardonnay 2011
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Hawke’s Bay A&P Society Young Vintners Scholarship
Haidee Johnson
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Hawke’s Bay Cellar Door of the Year
Sileni Estates Winery
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Champion Merlot
Church Road Winery - Church Road McDonald Series Merlot 2010
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Champion Red Blends - Cabernet Sauvignon Dominant
Te Awa Winery - Te Awa Cabernet Merlot 2009
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Champion Red Blends - Merlot Dominant
Sacred Hill Vineyards Ltd - Sacred Hill Brokenstone 2010
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Champion Syrah
Esk Valley Estate - Esk Valley Winemakers Reserve Gimblett Gravels Syrah 2010
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Pinot Noir (Best In Class)
Junction Wines - Junction Body and Soul Pinot Noir 2011
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Other Premium Red Varietals and Blends (Best In Class)
Church Road Winery - Church Road McDonald Series Marzemino 2009
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Champion Chardonnay
Villa Maria Estate - Villa Maria Reserve Hawkes Bay Chardonnay 2011
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Champion Sauvignon Blanc and/or Semillon
Vidal Wines - Vidal Reserve Series Hawkes Bay Organic Sauvignon Blanc 2011
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Pinot Gris (Best In Class)
Mills Reef Winery - Mills Reef Pinot Gris 2012
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Viognier (Best In Class)
Villa Maria Estate - Villa Maria Single Vineyard Omahu Gravels Viognier 2010
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Premium White Varietals (Best In Class)
Church Road Winery - Church Road McDonald Series Sauvignon Gris 2012
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Champion Sweet Wines
Osawa Wines - Osawa Wines Noble Gewürztraminer 2011
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Rosé (Best In Class)
Black Barn Vineyards - Black Barn Rose 2012
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Champion Museum Class
Sacred Hill Vineyards Ltd - Sacred Hill Rifleman’s Chardonnay 2007
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Sparkling (Best In Class)
Black Barn Vineyards - Black Barn Blanc de Blanc’s 2010