Queenstown hosts top wine awards

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Marlborough and Hawke’s Bay wines were the big winners at the Queenstown-hosted Air New Zealand Wine Awards yesterday (Saturday).
 
The Wine of the Show went to Marlborough’s Nautilus Cuvee Brut NV – just the third sparkling wine to win the awards’ premier trophy in its 27-year history. 

Chair of judges and Master of Wine Michael Brajkovich described the wine to the 520 guests at the Events Centre as having “a richness, length and complexity on the palate that finishes with a fine, persistent acidity”. 

The second highest accolade, the Reserve Wine of the Show, went to the Villa Maria Reserve Hawke’s Bay Chardonnay 2012, which also took away the chardonnay trophy. 

Of the 16 trophies, Marlborough and Hawke’s Bay wines won seven each. 

The Gisborne and Canterbury regions won one each while the awards’ host province, Otago, missed out.
Canterbury’s Greystone Waipara Valley Pinot Noir 2012 was the champion pinot noir. 

Otago, however, did win seven out of the 50 Pure Elite Gold Medals handed out. 

The competition, organised and owned by NZ Winegrowers, is the country’s most prestigious wine awards.