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Cellar Door Personality of The Year

19 October 2005

Cellar Door Personality of The Year; “So much more than sales.”

Christine Harris relaxing with her daughter, Sophie

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Christine Harris, of Kim Crawford Wines, was last night announced as 2005 Cellar Door Personality of The Year at the Hawke’s Bay A&P Mercedes Benz Wine Awards.

Today Christine said “I’m lost for words, it’s just fantastic to win this. I work for a great company in a truly fantastic spot so really, it’s easy to be bright and cheerful in my job and with people who come to the cellar door.”

Asked what she put her win down to Christine said “In Hawke’s Bay all the wineries work together and in Te Awanga we have our own little niche. It’s not just the wineries, there are various arts and crafts and a range of activities and accommodation all creating a memorable experience.”

“Personally speaking, I love it here and every day I go to work to treat customers as if they are coming to my place. It’s helped that I worked for Sue Cranswick (2004 Cellar Door Personality of The Year) at Esk Valley too. Sue’s a great lady, I owe a lot to her.”

Erica Crawford of Kim Crawford Wines said “We’re thrilled the show has recognised Christine. She does so much more than sales. Christine is an outstanding example of the multi talented professionals we need in the New Zealand wine industry.”

Christine Harris and John Hawkesby

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“Christine has run the Te Awanga cellar door since 2001. It operates as an independent business unit and Christine manages all aspects of it; hosting, wine tasting, wine education, staff, event co-ordination and the holiday apartment above the cellar door. She also has industry expertise, as a qualified viticulturalist Christine assists Kim Crawford and Stuart Wicken with vineyard management, particularly at the Te Awanga Vineyard.”

Christine agrees that her viticultural knowledge is invaluable. “I began in 1997 with the viticulture certificate, went on to the diploma and was one of the first to graduate EIT with a viticulture degree. Because I’m actively involved in the vineyard I can talk to people knowledgeably about that too. But most important is being friendly, welcoming, not being too serious and always having fun.”

And to celebrate her award, Christine’s chosen toast will be? “A glass of our bubbles, Rory. That’s got to be my favourite, it’s drinking beautifully.”

ENDS

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