Spy Valley Marlborough Pinot Noir 2013 has won the Champion Open Red Wine Trophy at the 2015 Air New Zealand Wine Awards.
Running for over 30 years, the Air New Zealand Wine Awards is New Zealand’s premier wine competition created to encourage and promote excellence in New Zealand winemaking for the benefit of winemakers and consumers.
Paul Bourgeois, Spy Valley’s chief winemaker said: “We are thrilled to have won this award. To get a gold medal at the most prestigious wine show in New Zealand is a big deal for us, but to win a trophy is outstanding! Pinot Noir in New Zealand, and particularly Marlborough has come a long way, as shown by the number of gold medals awarded to Pinot Noir this year.”
Pinot Noir was a star performer at this year’s Air New Zealand Wine Awards with 18 gold medals being awarded. Of these, 6 were from Central Otago, 5 from Marlborough and 4 from Martinborough.
This year's competition saw 1,407 wines entered into 16 different category. Judging took place in Auckland in November. The judging panel was led by Michael Brajkovich MW, alongside other international judges Ronny Lau from China and Mark Protheroe from Australia.
The Champion Open Red Wine trophy is for the champion Pure Elite Gold red wine judged in all red wine classes. Wines awarded trophies and medals are to be reasonably available for purchase by trade and consumers.
Marlborough is New Zealand’s largest Pinot Noir growing region but this is often overshadowed by the regions success of Sauvignon Blanc.
The grapes for this wine were estate-grown at the Johnson Vineyard in the lower Waihopai Valley, and the Outpost vineyard in the Omaka Valley in Marlborough’s Southern Valleys sub-region.
Paul describes the bouquet as possessing ‘sweet cherries and red berries with a fragrant spicy layer on the nose. Subtle licorice and cocoa notes typical of our vineyards.’ The palate is ‘sweet fruit initially which drives through the palate to a firm, almost chewy finish. The long linear structure and red-fruited flavours typify a favourable Marlborough vintage.’
Peter Rawling, Spy Valley’s Global Sales Manager said: “It is great promotion for the Marlborough Pinot Noir Category. To have this trophy awarded to a region that isn’t the go-to in consumers’ minds helps elevate Marlborough as a region and subsequently Spy Valley. It is an affordable option for a wider audience of consumers. We are thrilled with this accolade.”