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Gibbston Valley Winery celebrates two special ‘birthdays’

Media Release from Gibbston Valley Winery
17 August 2012

Gibbston Valley Winery celebrates two special ‘birthdays’

A Central Otago winery celebrating its 25th commercial grape harvest with a black tie dinner next month will also mark a milestone of a different kind.

The Gibbston Valley Winery anniversary dinner event on September 1 will kick start the award-winning winery’s support of national charity Cure Kids, with all proceeds from the night’s auctions going to the charity.

In keeping with that support, the dinner will also celebrate the remarkable story of Cure Kids ambassador and Queenstown resident Sophie Newbold, who celebrates her 18th birthday on September 14.

Sophie lives with CFC Syndrome, a rare genetic condition that typically affects the heart, facial features and skin, and is so small for her age she is often mistaken to be younger. She is just the 12th person in the world to be diagnosed with this condition at birth.

The celebration dinner, dishing up a five-course degustation dinner with matching award-winning Gibbston Valley Wines, will be held in its new ‘Barrel Hall’. It will celebrate 25 years of grape growing at Gibbston Valley Winery, one of the southernmost vineyards in the world.

Sophie and her family live in Gibbston Valley and Sophie has been invited to be a waitress at the celebration dinner, helping her achieve a ‘bucket list’ goal of having a part-time job.

Cure Kids business development director Josie Spillane said it was a huge testament to the community and an honour for Cure Kids to work in partnership with Gibbston Valley Winery

“We take this relationship seriously and I’m incredibly excited about the entire event and the benefits to Cure Kids,” she said.

“I can see no better way to kick off Sophie’s 18th birthday month than with a 25th birthday celebration being held right in her back yard.

“The Newbold family is really looking forward to attending the dinner and being part of the evening. Cure Kids has an-ongoing commitment to helping Sophie achieve some of her dreams one of which is to get a part-time job. We’re delighted that Gibbston Valley Winery has asked her to be a waitress on the night, and I’ve already ‘bagged’ her to wait on my table.”

All proceeds from auctions on the night will go to Cure Kids.

Auction items include a signed replica of a unique ‘Otago Winemakers’ painting donated by renowned local artist Thomas Brown, and exclusive Gibbston Valley Wines.

Gibbston Valley Winery CEO Greg Hunt said the dinner was a very special occasion.

“This is a significant milestone celebrating the first production of pinot noir in our region. We’re thrilled to be hosting this event and supporting this hugely worthy community charity at the same time.

“We’re digging deep into our cellars and pulling out some of our most highly sought-after wine for the auction, including special release large format bottles of Gibbston Valley wine that have never before been available.

“A highlight of the auction will no doubt be a double magnum of 2011 Le Maitre which is the label from the original home block that wine pioneer Alan Brady planted 25 years ago.

“Thomas Brown has donated the framed giclée on canvas of his celebrated ‘Otago Winemakers’ piece that features founding winemaker Alan Brady – it couldn’t be more appropriate.”

Mr Hunt said other Gibbston Valley wines up for auction on the night would include the 2011 nine-litre Reserve Pinot Noir, three double magnums of 2009, 2010 and 2011 Gibbston Valley Pinot Noir, and a four-pack of signed Single Vineyard wines from 2011.

Totally Tourism has donated a Remarkables Scenic Helicopter Flight for two to the auction and local fashion designer Claire Brinsley has donated one of her current season ‘claire bloom’ dresses.

There will be signed magnums of Le Maitre pinot noir for sale at the cellar door for guests to buy as collectors’ items.

Gibbston Valley Wine anniversary dinner fast facts:

Date: 1 September
Auction: Rare and collectable wine, signed by Alan Brady and Christopher Keys, Thomas Brown artwork, Totally Tourism scenic helicopter flight and claire bloom dress with all proceeds going to Cure Kids
Entertainment: Live music by local band Calico
Cost: $120 per person all inclusive
Return Transport: Optional service at an additional $20 per person

Bookings for dinner and transport can be made by calling Kelly Cruickshank at Gibbston Valley Winery on +64 (3) 442 6910 or by email on

Accommodation packages are available at The Heritage Hotel, Millbrook and St Mortiz Queenstown. Please contact the hotels directly to make a reservation.


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