Too much news today! Please stop sending me any so I can get on with writing my next FT article.
The leading Australian wine magazine, Gourmet Traveller WINE, held its big annual awards ceremony last night in Melbourne and awarded the prestigious Australian Winemaker of the Year title to Andrew Wigan (pictured) of Peter Lehmann wines in the Barossa Valley. Judge Peter Forrestal drew attention to his less frequently touted facility with whites as well as reds. (Certainly the quality of Peter Lehmann Semillons and Rieslings have raised eyebrows in those regions normally associated with the varieties, Hunter and Clare Valleys respectively. Look out particularly for Peter Lehmann Margaret Barossa Semillon - most impressive.) Victoria and South Australia each had three finalists in contention for the title while New South Wales had none.
Up and coming winemaker Sarah Fagan of De Bortoli in the Yarra Valley (who can be seen on our Yarra the morning after video filmed just after the bushfires last March) was awarded the Wine Australia Medal. Kevin McLintock, deputy chairman of McWilliams and member of the Australian Wine and Brandy Corporation board, won the Len Evans Award for industry leadership (which must have been quite a difficult category to judge this year...).
One new development this year is the involvement of Wine Australia in these high-profile awards. Paul Henry explained, 'We have a set of complementary features and benefits and recognise what each is good at. Both promote and celebrate Australian winemaking.'
Full results, along with an article by me on how academe might play a part in promoting wine, can be found in the Oct/Nov issue of Gourmet Traveller WINE.