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Bragato Wine Awards 2016 Results

By August 26, 2016No Comments
The 2016 Bragato Wine Awards were judged in Auckland on 16 and 17 August, and the results were announced at the Bragato Dinner in Blenheim last night. The Champion Wine of the Show Trophy and Champion Single Vineyard Wine was awarded to the Villa Maria ‘Single Vineyard – Ihumatao’ Auckland Chardonnay 2014. Winner of the Richard Smart Trophy and Champion Domaine Wine was the Villa Maria ‘Reserve’ Gimblett Gravels Hawke’s Bay Cabernet Sauvignon/Merlot 2014. These results confirm the dominance Villa Maria enjoys in wine shows, and the superb standards in viticulture and winemaking employed by the company.  www.bragato.org.nz
The Bragato Wine Awards reward fruit excellence by acknowledging the work of the grower and viticulturist, and the importance of the site. I’ve always seen the show as one that recognises ‘terroir’, and as such, is the wine competition that will lead the industry into recognising and rating some of the best vineyards in the country. The Bragato Champion Wine of the Trophy – Champion Single Vineyard Wine must have a minimum of 95% of the grape juice coming from a single vineyard. The Richard Smart Trophy – Champion Domaine Wine must have at least 85% of the grape juice from a single vineyard.

This year, there were 616 wines entered for judging, with 37 (6.0%) awarded gold medals, 104 16.9%) silver and 277 (15.0%) awarded bronze, making a total of 418 (67.9%) medal winners. The judging team was chaired by Ben Glover, with the international judges Andrea Frost and Nick Ryan both coming from Australia. The senior judges were Rod Easthope, Helen Masters, James Millton, Helen Morrison, Simon Nunns, Barry Riwai and John Saker. The associate judges were Lauren Swift, Liz Wheadon and Stephen Wong MW.
 
A Brief Analysis of the Gold Medal Winners
In looking at the 37 gold medal winners, among the three major classes, Pinot Noir was the most successful variety, with 7 golds, 4 of which came from Central Otago. There were 130 Pinot Noir entries. There were 70 Sauvignon Blanc entries yielding 5 golds, a good return. The relatively lower number of entries indicates that much Sauvignon Blanc produced is from blended sites. Chardonnay continues its comeback with 4 golds, though proportionally, from 80 entries, the showing is not as strong as it has been in other shows. Syrah was similarly successful with 4 golds, these from 49 entries, thus making it a strong result.

The aromatic varieties performed with variation, with 3 golds for Riesling from 36 entries, making this result one of high performance. There were also 3 golds for Pinot Gris, but from 59 entries, and one gold for Gewurztraminer from 22 entries, indicating the more difficult nature of their production to high quality.

Sweet Wines, with 2 golds from 20 entries, and Cabernet Sauvignon-based wines with 3 golds from 22 entries are the best performing classes at the show. Technically difficult to make well, the gold Sweet Wines are noteworthy. And the Cabernet Sauvignon result indicates the 2013 and 2014 vintages have proven favourable for that variety. Merlot-based wines yielded 2 golds from 33 entries, a more modest performance. Somewhat better in ratio was Rosé with 2 golds from 26 entries.

Two classes not awarded any gold medals were Other Whites, indicating the lesser performance of the likes of Viognier and Gruner Veltliner, and Sparkling – a category difficult to achieve quality from a single site, the sparkling style usually reliant on blending for balance and quality.

As noted in the first paragraph, the show was another triumph for Villa Maria, who was awarded 8 gold medals and 6 trophies, including Champion Wine of the Show.
 
The Trophy Winners
Following are the trophy winning wines. The vineyard from where the fruit was sourced is also listed, and the name of the grower or viticulturist responsible:
 
Bragato Champion Wine of the Show Trophy and Champion Single Vineyard Wine
Villa Maria Single Vineyard Ihumatao Chardonnay 2014
Ihumatao Vineyard, Auckland
Brett Donaldson
 
Richard Smart Trophy and Champion Domaine Wine
Villa Maria Reserve Gimblett Gravels Hawke’s Bay Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon Merlot 2014
Vidal Vineyard, Hawke’s Bay
Phil Holden

Friedrich Wohnsiedler Trophy Winner and Champion Riesling
Maude, Mt Maude Vineyard East Block Riesling Central Otago 2016
Mt Maude Vineyard, Central Otago
Dawn and Terry Wilson

Brother Cyprian Trophy Winner and Champion Pinot Gris
Aronui Pinot Gris Single Vineyard Nelson 2016
Whenua Matua Vineyard, Nelson
Jonny Hiscox

Champion Gewürztraminer
Villa Maria Single Vineyard Ihumatao Gewürztraminer 2014
Ihumatao Vineyard, Auckland
Brett Donaldson
 
Champion Other Red Wine
Coopers Creek SV Hawke’s Bay Malbec ‘Saint John’ 2013
Saint John Vineyard, Hawke’s Bay
Wayne Morrow

Champion Sweet Wine
Villa Maria Reserve Marlborough Noble Riesling Botrytis Selection 2015
Rocenvin Vineyard, Marlborough
Chris Fletcher
 
New Zealand Wine Cellars Spence Brothers Trophy Winner and Champion Sauvignon Blanc
Tohu Single Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc Marlborough 2016
Tohu Awatere Vineyard, Marlborough
Mondo Kopua

Bill Irwin Trophy Winner and Champion Chardonnay
Brett Donaldson
Ihumatao Vineyard, Auckland
Villa Maria Single Vineyard Ihumatao Chardonnay 2014

Champion Rosé
Wooing Tree Rosé Central Otago 2016
Wooing Tree Vineyard, Central Otago
Geoff Bews

Mike Wolter Memorial Trophy Winner and Champion Pinot Noir
Black Quail Estate Pinot Noir Central Otago 2013
Keillor Vineyard, Central Otago
Rod and Mirani Kellior
 
Tom McDonald Memorial Trophy Winner and Champion Classical Red Wine
Villa Maria Reserve Gimblett Gravels Hawke’s Bay Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon Merlot 2014
Vidal Vineyard, Hawke’s Bay
Phil Holden

Alan Limmer Trophy Winner and Champion Syrah
Falcon Ridge Estate Syrah Nelson 2015
Falcon Ridge Estate, Nelson
Alan J Eggers
 
The Gold Medal Winners
Following are the 37 gold medal winners. The wines are listed alphabetically by producer in each class, and the name of the vineyard source is noted. A full list of all the medal winners will be available on www.wineshow.co.nz
 
Chardonnay
Saint Clair Pioneer Block 10 Twin Hills Chardonnay 2014 (Omaka Vineyard)
Te Awa Single Estate Hawkes Bay Chardonnay 2015 (Te Awa Vineyard)
Villa Maria Single Vineyard Ihumatao Chardonnay 2014 (Ihumatao Vineyard)
Villa Maria Single Vineyard Keltern Chardonnay 2015 (Keltern Vineyard)
 
Sauvignon Blanc
Catalina Sounds ‘Sound of White’ Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2015 (Sound of White Vineyard)
Domain Road Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc 2014 (Domain Road Vineyard)
Saint Clair Pioneer Block 3 43 Degrees Sauvignon Blanc 2015 (Kevlyn Vineyards)
The Crossings Sauvignon Blanc 2016 (Willow Flat Vineyard)
Tohu Single Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc Marlborough 2016 (Tohu Awatere Vineyard)
 
Riesling
Jackson Estate Homestead Dry Riesling 2015 (Homestead vineyard, Somerset vineyard, Gum Emperor vineyard)
Maude, Mt Maude Vineyard East Block Riesling 2016 (Mt Maude Vineyard)
Vic Williams’ Selection Marlborough Riesling 2015 (Korohi Vineyard)
 
Pinot Gris
Aronui Pinot Gris Single Vineyard Nelson 2016 (Whenua Matua)
Eradus Single Vineyard Awatere Valley Marlborough Pinot Gris 2015 (Eradus Vineyard)
Junction Pastime Pinot Gris 2015 (Junction Vineyard)
 
Gewurztraminer
Villa Maria Single Vineyard Ihumatao Gewurztraminer 2014 (Ihumatao Vineyard)
 
Sweet Wines
Saint Clair Godfrey’s Creek Reserve Noble Gewurztraminer 2014 (Woodbourne Farm Ltd)
Villa Maria Reserve Marlborough Noble Riesling Botrytis Selection 2015 (Rocenvin Vineyard)
 
Rosé
SOHO Westwood Rosé 2016 (Jomara Vineyard)
Wooing Tree Rosé 2016 (Wooing Tree)
 
Pinot Noir
8 Ranges “Barrel Selection” Pinot Noir 2013 (8 Ranges Wines (Tussock Ridge Vineyard))
Bald Hills Single Vineyard Pinot Noir 2014 (Bald Hills Wines)
Black Quail Estate Pinot Noir 2013 (Keillor Vineyard)
Saint Clair Pioneer Block 14 Doctor’s Creek Pinot Noir 2014 (Doctor’s Creek Estate)
The Craft Series The Journey Pinot Noir 2013 (Marisco Vineyard’s Waihopai River Vineyard)
Villa Maria Single Vineyard Taylors Pass Pinot Noir 2014 (Taylors Pass Vineyard)
Waimea Pinot Noir 2015 (Waimea Estates)
 
Merlot and Merlot Predominant
Villa Maria Cellar Selection Hawkes Bay Organic Merlot 2014 (Joseph Soler Vineyard)
Villa Maria Reserve Gimblett Gravels Hawkes Bay Merlot 2014 (Twyford Gravels Vineayr )
 
Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Sauvignon Predominant
Coopers Creek SV Hawkes Bay Cabernet Sauvignon Merlot ‘Gimblett Gravels’ 2013 (Omahu Road)
Goldie Reserve Cabernet Merlot Franc 2013 (Goldie Vineyard)
Villa Maria Reserve Gimblett Gravels Hawkes Bay Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon Merlot 2014 (Vidal Vineyard)
 
Syrah
Cape Kidnappers Syrah 2015 (Clearview Estate)
Coopers Creek Hawkes Bay Syrah 2014 (Chalk Ridge)
Falcon Ridge Estate Syrah 2015 (Falcon Ridge Estate)
Goldie Reserve Syrah 2014 (Goldie Vineyard)
 
Other Reds
Coopers Creek SV Hawkes Bay Malbec ‘Saint John’ 2013 (Saint John)

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