Hawke’s Bay wines on winning streak
25 Nov 2008
Syrah and Hawke's Bay wines took top honours at the 2008 Air New Zealand Wine Awards.
Church Road Reserve Syrah 2007 was awarded the Air New Zealand Champion Wine of the Show, while Crossroads Winery Elms Vineyard Hawke's Bay Reserve Syrah 2007 won the Bell Gully Champion Sustainable Wine Trophy for sustainably-produced wines.
Hawke's Bay and Marlborough regions dominated the awards, each claiming eight trophies. Central Otago was awarded two trophies.
World class syrah
Chairman of the judging panel and Master of Wine Steve Smith said the two winning wines made a big impression on the 26 judges.
"The Church Road Reserve Syrah 2007 is an absolutely stunning wine that is world class," Mr Smith said.
This was the second year running that a Hawke's Bay syrah has topped the awards. The Trinity Hill Homage Syrah 2006 won last year's champion wine of the show.
"The past two years have shown that New Zealand winemakers are producing truly world-class syrah. It's a varietal that has huge potential for the New Zealand wine industry," Mr Smith said.
Syrah was "an ideal rich red wine partner to the medium-bodied pinot noir offering that New Zealand is incredibly good at," he said.
Church Road winemaker Chris Scott didn't attend the gala awards dinner in Wellington, but said "the phone wouldn’t stop ringing. I was grinning from ear to ear. It's just such a fantastic result for Hawke's Bay. Syrah is obviously a winner for the region."
Elite gold medals
In addition to the 18 trophies, 28 elite gold medals and three 'pure' elite gold medals (for sustainably-produced wines) have been awarded across six winegrowing regions. Elite gold and pure elite gold medals recognise the most outstanding wines in each class.
Pinot noir and chardonnay were awarded the most elite gold medals, with eight medals each.
Organised by New Zealand Winegrowers, the Air New Zealand Wine Awards is the country's most prestigious wine competition. This year's awards attracted a record 1751 entries from New Zealand's 10 winegrowing regions.
The full medal results from the 2008 Air New Zealand Wine Awards are now available at:
Air New Zealand Wine Awards
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