Canberra district wine wins top award at 2017 Canberra International Riesling Challenge

Posted 13 Oct 2017

Story by CBR Canberra

It’s been an exciting few weeks for wine makers in the capital!

Following the announcement of local winemaker Sarah Collingwood being named the Australian Women in Wine Awards owner/operator of the year, Canberra district winery, Gallagher Wines, has taken out the top award at the 2017 Canberra International Riesling Challenge.

The Canberra winery was named ‘Best Wine of the 2017 Challenge’ for its 2017 Gallagher Riesling, which triumphed over other varieties from New Zealand, USA, Germany, France, Hungary and the Czech Republic.

Adding to their accolades, Gallagher Wines was also named Best Dry Riesling, Best in Australia and Best Riesling from the Canberra District.

Will Gilbert, winemaker at Gilbert Family Wines in Mudgee, NSW, was awarded the Encouragement Award for up and coming Riesling Winemakers.

The Challenge was judged under the guidance of Chairman of Judges, John Belsham, seven judges from Australia, the USA and Germany, and three Associate Judges, who tasted over 500 wines across the last four days of the challenge held at Canberra’s historic Albert Hall.

Mr Belsham, an international winemaker of Foxes Island Wines NZ and a critic with over 35 years of wine industry experience, says the awards featured wines from a range of countries, as well as small family owned winegrowers and large commercial operators.

“Our panel of expert judges have endorsed wines that suit all palates and budgets, from the vibrant, fresh and youthful, to the seamlessly aged museum wines. Judging these wines has been a sheer delight and now we invite everyone to share the joy,” says Mr Belsham.

All wines in this year’s Challenge have been recognised for their excellence at this evening’s Celebration of Riesling and Awards Presentation ceremony. The Chair of the Canberra International Riesling Challenge (CIRC), James Service AM, says the results reflect outstanding recent vintages, the versatility and longevity of older Rieslings and the remarkable attention to detail by winemakers and viticulturists.

Mr Service also acknowledged the exceptional support provided to the Canberra International Riesling Challenge by its sponsors, and by the high calibre of international judges who so generously and unselfishly gave their time to this event.

For a full listing of results, you can visit the Riesling Challenge website.

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