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Top International Judges for Liquorland Top 100

For immediate release

Friday, 15 July 2005

Top International Judges for Liquorland Top 100

With a little over a month before judging gets underway for the 2005 Liquorland Top 100 International Wine Competition event organisers are pleased to announce the appointment of UK-based wine judge Adrian Atkinson, Wine Development Manager for Allied Domecq World Wines, to the senior judging panel. Adrian will travel from the UK to join Chris Shanahan, Canberra Times wine writer and Mike DeGaris, from The Rothbury Estate, Hunter Valley, New South Wales.

All three will join a panel of 20 judges lead by well-regarded New Zealand wine-maker Brent Marris. They will evaluate some of the world’s top wines at the 2005 Liquorland Top 100 International Wine Competition being held in Wellington in August.

“With large numbers of international wines being entered in the competition each year it’s important to encourage judge participation from outside of New Zealand. Collectively, Adrian, Chris and Mike will add another dimension to this year’s event. Their respective backgrounds contribute a broad range of international experience, an essential requirement when judging such a wide variety of wines,” says Liquorland Merchandise Manager, Andrew Bartley.

The top-class line up of Competition Director, Belinda Jackson; Chief Judge, Brent Marris and Chief Steward, Shona White, have secured an outstanding panel of New Zealand based judges in addition to the International guests.

Entries for the Liquorland Top 100 International Wine Competition close on Monday, 15 August 2005. Entry forms are available from Liquorland’s website or by contacting the Competition Administrator, Margaret Cresswell, on (03) 5729857 or

The Liquorland Top 100 International Wine Competition is the only recognised local wine show that compares New Zealand wines with imported wines in all styles and price categories. Over the past eleven years the competition has been instrumental in promoting top quality and great value wines.


Adrian Atkinson currently holds the position Wine Development Manager in the UK for Allied Domecq World Wines. In addition to this role he is responsible for product training and trade PR events. He works closely with fellow winemakers in New Zealand, Spain, Argentina and California on new product development, blending wine styles and quality. Adrian also sits on trade bodies including the Spanish Wine Action Group and is currently chairperson of the Wines of Argentina Importers Committee.

He started his career with Oddbins in 1991 as a senior buyer managing a team of wine buyers and a diverse portfolio of products including international wines and water. After a ten-year stretch he left in 2001 to set up a joint venture, internet-mail order operation between Oddbins and Sainsbury, moving into Sainsburys main buying team as Fine Wine Buyer in 2003.

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