Friday, 21 August 2015 07:10

Changes Afoot

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This year’s Romeo Bragato Wine Awards will be different to those in the past, with the awards split into two sections. 

Chairman of Judges Ben Glover, says “the time has come to acknowledge the single vineyard wines that are emanating throughout New Zealand”.

“There has always been a requirement where the wine entered has to be predominantly 85 percent of an estate owned vineyard. This has been renamed the Domaine class, across all varieties. 

“We have introduced a single vineyard class across all categories, where the wine must be a minimum of 95 percent from a single vineyard.” 

The change should not impact any entrant, who has entered in previous years, Glover says. Rather, it will provide an opportunity for a winemaker, owner or company to celebrate and show their single vineyard wines.

“We want to know more about them, and we also want to celebrate and reward those sites and growers.”

Despite this change, Glover is ensuring the wines will all be judged together as each wine needs to stand on its own two feet and be rewarded accordingly. 

“We will award and reward separately.”

The 2015 Romeo Bragato Wine Awards will also feature two new sections – alternative Sauvignon Blanc and a minimal intervention class.

“We are keen to explore and assess, whether there is interest in these emerging wine styles. And I feel the Bragato wine awards are a perfect forum to understand this.”

The judging panel under Glover will include Emma Jenkins MW, James Millton – Millton Estate, Simon Nunns – Coopers Creek, Dave McGee – Black Barn, Barry Rewai – Alpha Domus, Sarah-Kate Dineen – Maude, James Rowan – Westbrook/Soho and Rod Easthope – Easthope Wines. For the first time an international judge will join the panel – Australian Dan Simms from Bottle Shop Concepts. The associates are, Liz Wheadon – General Manager, Glengarry’s, Francis Hutt – Winemaker, Carrick and Greg Alison – Winemaker, Trinity Hill.

“I have tried to fashion a cohesive pool of judges with a range of different strengths and foresight. It is great to have Dan Simms on board; as he will bring a new perspective and energy to the Bragato Wine Awards. ” 

Judging of the wines will take place on August 22 and 23, with the trophies presented at the Romeo Bragato Conference dinner, in Hawke’s Bay on August 27.

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