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Marlborough and HB grape growers take top honours

ROMEO BRAGATO WINE AWARDS 2006

Marlborough and Hawke's Bay grape growers take top honours -

Pinot Noir is the darling of this year's Romeo Bragato Wine Awards, winning the prestigious Bragato Trophy for the Champion Wine of Show.

Grape grower John Rutherford of Marlborough produced the winning Rutherford Pinot Noir 2004 to take this top honour, also collecting the Mike Wolter Memorial Trophy for Champion Pinot Noir.

The runner-up was Geoff Jensen of Omaka Springs Estates, Marlborough, for the Falveys Sauvignon Blanc 2006, taking home the Richard Smart Trophy for Reserve Champion Wine.

Grape growers from Marlborough and the Hawke's Bay received all eight Trophies and 11 Champion awards.

Ivan Donaldson, Chairman of Judges, said the quality of this year's entries were extremely high and provided a glimpse of what to expect from the wines of the 2006 harvest.

Philip Gregan, Chief Executive of New Zealand Winegrowers was equally impressed by the calibre of grape growers and their wines.

"The Romeo Bragato Wine Awards is a special competition because it recognises the viticultural excellence of grape growers and individual vineyards. The quality of entries received were in sync with any top winemaking industry and there were some standout wines reflecting the level of innovation and expertise New Zealand has reached in grape growing and wine making."

476 medals were also awarded at this year's Romeo Bragato Wine Awards, consisting of 53 Gold, 141 Silver and 282 Bronze medals. Entries were up 20 per cent from last year, with 667 wines received for judging.

The Romeo Bragato Awards were judged under the auspices of Competition Director Mark Compton and Chairman of the Judges Professor Ivan Donaldson.

The twelfth annual Bragato Wine Awards were announced in Queenstown tonight at a dinner attended by over 700 grape growers, viticulturalists, winemakers and other wine industry representatives.

The Romeo Bragato Wine Awards are held in conjunction with the Romeo Bragato Conference, which discusses the role science, technology and innovation plays in grape growing and wine making.

AWARDS

BRAGATO TROPHY FOR THE CHAMPION WINE OF SHOW

Rutherford Pinot Noir 2004

John Rutherford

Rutherford Vineyard, Marlborough

RICHARD SMART TROPHY FOR THE RESERVE CHAMPION WINE

Falveys Sauvignon Blanc 2006

Geoff Jensen

Omaka Springs Estates, Marlborough

BILL IRWIN TROPHY FOR THE CHAMPION CHARDONNAY

Summerhouse Marlborough Chardonnay 2005

Meric and Heather Davies

Summerhouse Vineyard, Marlborough

CARDMEMBER WINES SPENCE BROTHERS TROPHY FOR THE CHAMPION SAUVIGNON BLANC

Falveys Sauvignon Blanc 2006

Geoff Jensen

Omaka Springs Estates, Marlborough

FRIEDRICH WOHNSIEDLER TROPHY FOR THE CHAMPION RIESLING

Charles Wiffen Riesling 2004

Charles Wiffen

Charles Wiffen Wines, Cheviot, Marlborough

TOM McDONALD MEMORIALTROPHY FOR THE CHAMPION CLASSICAL RED WINE

Cornerstone Cabernet Merlot Malbec 2002

Robert Newton

Cornerstone Vineyard, Hawke's Bay

MIKE WOLTER MEMORIAL TROPHY FOR THE CHAMPION PINOT NOIR

Rutherford Pinot Noir 2004

John Rutherford

Rutherford Vineyard, Marlborough

ALAN LIMMER TROPHY FOR THE CHAMPION SYRAH

Bridge Pa Louis Syrah 2004

Lisa Daysh

Bridge Pa Vineyard, Hawke's Bay

CHAMPION GEWURZTRAMINER
Te Whare Ra Gewurztraminer 2005
Jason Flowerday
Te Whare Ra Vineyard, Marlborough

CHAMPION DESSERT WINE
Villa Maria Reserve Noble Botrytis Riesling 2004
Colin and Chris Fletcher
Fletcher Vineyard, Marlborough

CHAMPION AMATEUR WINE
The Winery IV 2004
Chris and Sally Brownlie
Saltaire Growers, Hawke's Bay

A complete list of medal winners can be downloaded from www.nzwine.com/news.

ENDS

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