Gourmantic travelled to Queenstown for the Air New Zealand Wine Awards as guests of Air New Zealand.
The prestigious Air New Zealand Wine Awards were held in Queenstown’s Convention Centre with more than 500 local and international guests attending the black tie gala dinner.
Air New Zealand Wine Awards
The competition is owned and organised by New Zealand Winegrowers, the national organisation for the country’s 1,700 grape growers and winemakers.
Nautilus NV Brut
Nautilus Cuvée Brut NV took out the coveted title of Air New Zealand Champion Wine of the Show. The sparkling wine, made from Marlborough-grown Pinot Noir and Chardonnay grapes, is made by Nautilus Estate, a small, family-owned Marlborough winery which started in 1985 and has won a number of awards over the years.
Villa Maria Reserve Hawke’s Bay Chardonnay 2012
The second highest accolade of the evening, the O-I New Zealand Reserve Wine of the Show, was awarded to the Villa Maria Reserve Hawke’s Bay Chardonnay 2012, a wine that also won the Rabobank New Zealand Limited Champion Chardonnay Trophy.
Christopher Luxton, CEO Air New Zealand
Master of Ceremony and renowned comedian, Jeremy Corbett introduced key personalities who presented the winners with their trophies. The awards were split into four trophy announcements, each interspersed with a delectable menu designed by consultant chef for Air New Zealand, Peter Gordon and prepared by In2Food. The dishes were selected to pair with the award winning wines served at the tables after each cluster of announcements.
Tasting Plate Trio
A Tasting Plate Trio was made of Central Otago rabbit and pork rillettes with homemade Picalilli and Gibbston crabapple jelly, baked mushroom stuffed with local walnuts, goats cheese and caramelised garlic with kaiwari sprouts and and unusual dip made of mussels, chickpeas and kumara with crispy harakeke flaxseed crostini.
Sweet Miso Glazed Akaroa Salmon followed, perfectly cooked sous-vide with a side of eggplant sultana puree, baby rocket and chilli dressing for a little touch of heat.
Continuing with local produce, the main course was Southland Farmed Venison with Horopito roast parsnips and baby carrots, topped with spinach, pine nuts, mushroom jus and horseradish chrain which lifted the flavours of the tender meat.
A selection of Whitestone Cheese with homemade quince paste and spiced figs followed. This includes Lindis Pass Brie, Monte Cristo, Vintage Windsor Blue and Totara Tasty Cheddar, the latter truly living up to its name.
Poached Pear in spiced Pinot Noir
To finish, Poached Pear in Spiced Pinot Noir accompanied a rich Chocolate Parmesan Tart and vanilla Mascarpone. Dessert was served with the winning wine trophies, including the nectar-like Riverby Estate Noble Riesling 2012.
Winning trophy presented to Nautilus Estate by Christopher Luxon (CEO Air NZ) *
Air New Zealand Wine Awards 2013 Trophy Winners
Air New Zealand Champion Wine of the Show: Nautilus Cuvée Brut NV
O-I New Zealand Reserve Wine of the Show: Villa Maria Reserve Hawke’s Bay Chardonnay 2012
Label and Litho Limited Champion Sauvignon Blanc: Boundary Vineyards Rapaura Road Sauvignon Blanc 2013
Rabobank New Zealand Limited Champion Chardonnay: Villa Maria Reserve Hawke’s Bay Chardonnay 2012
Guala Closures NZ Champion Pinot Gris: Lake Chalice Marlborough Pinot Gris 2013
Plant & Food Research Champion Riesling: Highfield Riesling 2012
ICIB Gold Medal Insurance Champion Gewürztraminer: Not Awarded
BDO Champion Other White Styles and Rosé: Coopers Creek SV Gisborne Albariño ‘Bell-Ringer’ 2013
Wineworks Champion Sparkling Wine: Nautilus Cuvée Brut NV
Stuff.co.nz Champion Dessert Wine: Riverby Estate Noble Riesling 2012
JF Hillebrand New Zealand Ltd Champion Pinot Noir: Greystone Waipara Valley Pinot Noir 2012
Fruitfed Supplies Limited Champion Syrah: Elephant Hill Syrah 2012
Coast FM Champion Merlot, Cabernet and Blends: Villa Maria Reserve Gimblett Gravels Hawke’s Bay Cabernet Sauvignon Merlot 2010
Fairfax Media Champion Other Red Styles: Not Awarded
New World Champion Open White Wine: Lake Chalice Marlborough Pinot Gris 2013
Liquorland Champion Open Red Wine: Church Road McDonald Series Merlot 2011
Waitoa Free Range Chicken Champion Exhibition White or Sparkling Wine: Villa Maria Single Vineyard Keltern Chardonnay 2012
Business World Travel Champion Exhibition Red Wine: Esk Valley Winemakers Reserve Hawke’s Bay Syrah 2010
Pure Elite Gold Medals
Every wine entered into the Air New Zealand Wine Awards from vintage 2010 onwards has to be 100 per cent sustainably grown and produced in order to enter the competition. Pure Medals are awarded to wines that are 100 per cent sustainable and that have achieved medal status. Therefore, a wine that attains a Gold Medal score and is sustainably accredited is awarded a Pure Gold Medal rather than a ‘Gold Medal’. In 2013, 634 Pure Medals were handed out.
Kim Crawford Small Parcels Méthode 2009
Mount Riley Gewürztraminer 2013
Lake Chalice Marlborough Pinot Gris 2013
Mud House South Island Pinot Gris 2012
Two Tracks Pinot Gris 2012
Giesen Riesling 2013
Highfield Riesling 2012
Hunter’s Marlborough Riesling 2013
Terrace Edge Liquid Geography Riesling 2012
Villa Maria Reserve Marlborough Dry Riesling 2010
Boundary Vineyards Rapaura Road Sauvignon Blanc 2013
Corbans Homestead Sauvignon Blanc 2012
Peter Yealands Sauvignon Blanc 2013
Rossendale Sauvignon Blanc 2013
Saint Clair Pioneer Block 2 Swamp Block Sauvignon Blanc 2013
Stoneleigh Rapaura Series Sauvignon Blanc 2013
te Pā Sauvignon Blanc 2013
Coopers Creek SV Hawke’s Bay Chardonnay ‘The Limeworks’ 2012
Mount Riley 17 Valley Chardonnay 2011
Nautilus Estate Chardonnay 2012
Saint Clair Pioneer Block 11 Cell Block Chardonnay 2012
Te Awa Chardonnay 2010
Villa Maria Reserve Hawke’s Bay Chardonnay 2011
Villa Maria Reserve Hawke’s Bay Chardonnay 2012
Villa Maria Single Vineyard Keltern Chardonnay 2012
Villa Maria Single Vineyard Omahu Gravels Viognier 2010
Dessert Wine Styles
Allan Scott Family Winemakers Late Harvest Riesling 2013
Riverby Estate Noble Riesling 2012
Seifried Winemakers Collection Sweet Agnes Riesling 2012
Wairau River Reserve Botrytised Riesling 2012
Kate Radburnd Berry Blush Hawke’s Bay Rosé 2013
Archangel Pinot Noir 2012
Domain Road Vineyard Pinot Noir 2011
Grasshopper Rock Central Otago Pinot Noir 2012
Greylands Ridge Pinot Noir 2012
Greystone Waipara Valley Pinot Noir 2012
Lowburn Ferry Home Block Pinot Noir 2012
Mount Michael Bessie’s Block Pinot Noir 2012
Saint Clair Pioneer Block 5 Bull Block Pinot Noir 2012
Thistle Ridge Waipara Valley Pinot Noir 2012
Villa Maria Cellar Selection Marlborough Pinot Noir 2011
Wooing Tree Pinot Noir 2012
Merlot, Cabernet and Blends
Church Road McDonald Series Merlot 2011
Esk Valley Gimblett Gravels Hawke’s Bay Merlot Cabernet Sauvignon Malbec 2012
Villa Maria Reserve Gimblett Gravels Hawke’s Bay Cabernet Sauvignon Merlot 2010
Elephant Hill Syrah 2012
Esk Valley Winemakers Reserve Hawke’s Bay Syrah 2010
Newton Forrest Syrah 2011
Other Varieties – Single
Coopers Creek SV Gisborne Albariño ‘Bell-Ringer’ 2013
Villa Maria Reserve Gimblett Gravels Hawke’s Bay Malbec 2009
Elite Gold Medals
Nautilus Cuvée Brut NV
The Air New Zealand Wine Awards 2013 were held on Saturday 23 November 2013 in Queenstown, New Zealand at the Convention Centre.
*Image Courtesy of Air New Zealand, used with permission
Photography © by Kevin Burke for Gourmantic – Copyright: All rights reserved.
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