Discover our trophy winners from 2020

Class 1: Sparkling

“The striking colour of this wine sets it apart – copper with the faintest pink tinge to it – a bead that rises at its own gentle pace. A soft brioche note to the nose, ahead of orange citrus (subtle) and white strawberries. Under-stated and serious. Time in the bottle has softened all edges – the palate carries ripe red apple sweetness, hemmed cleverly by bubbles and citrus acidity. So much left to offer over the next few years.  Gala Estate is a quality producer with the patience and intent to put their best foot forward at every opportunity.  This has the poise and austere focus of top roses from Champagne with the intensity of fruit of the southern hemisphere – brilliant wine and excellent value.”  Nick Butler, The Fine Wine Review

“Fragrant yellow apple aromas. Toasted marshmallow notes with beautifully integrated mousse, intensity and biscuity complexity to the finish.”   Andrea Pritzker MW, 2020 ANZ Boutique Wine Show Judge

Class 2: Riesling

“While the vintage has produced significant challenges across many Australian wine regions, Clare Valley Rieslings from the class of 2020 have shown to be always good and often excellent. In a quality field, the Gomersal Wines 2020 release was a standout. Pale straw in hue, with the tinge of green that often comes with quality young Riesling. Hallmark lime rind aromatics meld beautifully with a lift of honeysuckle, and the faintest whiff of lychee.  A lovely, compelling nose. A defining character of this wine, when sipped, is it’s mouthfeel; rounded and welcoming – carrying its beautiful fruit intensity and focussing it towards a long and precise finish.  Dangerously approachable in its youth, and set to reward those with the patience to give it time. A most deserving Trophy Winner and cause to celebrate the vintage.”  Nick Butler, The Fine Wine Review

“Delicate lemon with some florals. Tight fine structure with good core fruit.”  Peter Leske, Chairman 2020 ANZ Boutique Wine Show

Class 3: Semillion

“The quality of the much-lauded 2014 vintage well and truly affirmed. Remarkably youthful in the glass – the green tinge that accompanies pristine Semillon on full display. A few swirls of the glass and the nose reflects the same spritely energy – more lime rind and lanolin than toast – yet to enter its hibernation. This really is a delicious Semillon with more than a decade of potential.  The lime rind theme brings with it a breadth as well as length – intense and compact – the genuine “coiled spring”. It’s releases like this that offer some of the greatest value in the wine world.  Kudos to the winemaking team who’ve given the quality fruit every opportunity to find its voice.”  Nick Butler, The Fine Wine Review

“Attractive aromas of lemon zest, lemon curd, toast. Showing lovely toast complexity entwined with vibrant lemon zest notes. Very good length.”  Andrea Pritzker MW, 2020 ANZ Boutique Wine Show Judge

Class 4: Sauvignon Blanc

“From a credentialed producer in a region famed for the variety, the 2020 Pike & Joyce “Descente” Sauvignon Blanc was the standout wine in the class. Balance is the key ingredient here – not too much of any one thing, and just enough of everything. It’s youthful, pale straw hue is standard for the variety on release.  It’s in the aromatics that it stamps its purity and class.  Lemongrass and aloe; high-toned citrus notes – clean and uncomplicated – a cooling calmness that comes with its freshness. The tease of mid-palate sweetness is in harmony with the citrus acidity that drives through to the finish. It flirts with the tropical spectrum but ultimately stays in its lane.  Oozes commercial appeal. Even more impressive considering the challenges that summer brought to the region.”  Nick Butler – The Fine Wine Review

Class 5: Chardonnay

“Australia’s Chardonnay renaissance continues, with regions across the country now balancing winemaking with the quality of fruit at their disposal.  In particular, the “struck match” complexity sought by many of our producers has found its way into many wines without compromising purity or balance. The 2019 Millbrook Single Vineyard Chardonnay is a beautifully crafted wine, with solid foundations in perfectly ripe fruit. It’s flinty, grapefruit driven nose is complemented by quality, spicy French oak.  A lusciousness to the mouthfeel is tempered by a pine-lime, sinewed seriousness.  More citrus rind than flesh. A beautiful wine, complex and layered. A most deserving Trophy Winner in a competitive class.”  Nick Butler – The Fine Wine Review

Class 7: Other White Varieties

“While Chenin Blanc is yet to achieve mainstream status, Aravina has done a great job edging it closer with consistently excellent releases over the past few years. Retaining a youthful, pale yellow hue despite its time in bottle, and time in oak. The nose is beautifully fruited – fuji apples; mandarin skins; and the faint tease of guava.  That time in oak imparts the lovely grapefruit tang of quality fume blanc.  It’s beautifully constructed, even before the first sip. There’s a lovely, leesy roundness on the palate.  Bright, crunchy green apple acidity.  Oak affords it a spine and seriousness that underwrites a beautiful future.  This is just a delightful glass of white wine.  Arguably Australia’s best.”  Nick Butler – The Fine Wine Review

Class 9: Rosé

“Palest watermelon pink – certainly the colour du jour.  A healthy vibrancy to it that would make you want to pick it from a line-up. Intense red berries on first swirl of the glass – cherries and cranberries – a spicy seriousness that sets it apart from the “strawberries and cream” set.  Hard not to keep swirling as it unfurls in the glass. It’s dry and driven – masterful fruit selection and blending resulting in a purposeful expression.  Its sapidity demands food.  Built to take on protein – a rare spine and sinew to this, lifting it above the pack. Rightfully ranks amongst Australia’s best rose wines.”  Nick Butler, The Fine Wine Review

Class 10: Merlot

“Deep purple with bright red edges – varietally true in its depth and intensity. So many plums on the nose – red, purple and even a touch of plum sauce.  Oak is just a frame. Cool climate characters kick in when sipped – bruised red apples hemmed in by acidity – a healthy black and red cherry mix adding bass to the palate. More than enough energy.  A terrific expression of Merlot – celebrating its versatility when ripe and balanced. Orange is surely the home of Merlot in Australia.”  Nick Butler, The Fine Wine Review

Class 11: Pinot Noir

“Dark, garnet red – time in the bottle has it comfortable in its skin. It’s a magnificent pinot noir. Complex and still fresh – aromas of wild strawberries and cured cherries meld beautifully with quality, toasty French oak.  Tasmania’s comparison to Burgundy justified in each and every swirl of the glass. The softness of the wine a stand-out feature – a gentle roundness on the palate – the sense that this wine is in perfect alignment writ large. Its fleshy charm held to account by grape tannin and red berry acidity. Structured; perfumed; ethereal; and assured – a most deserved ‘Wine of Show’.”  Nick Butler, The Fine Wine Review

Class 12: Shiraz / Syrah

“There were some obvious “glass-stainers” in this class, and this wine sits well outside that inky sphere. Medium purple with bright crimson edges. A compelling and complex nose of spice red berries; cinnamon; and pepper. Far from “obvious” and refreshing in its energy and agility. The rhoney sensibility of this wine is hard to ignore – ripe, with a stony, slaty minerality to it.  Serious drinkability.  Loads of freshness. The largest class of the Wine Show has put forward a wine of poise and subtlety.  Kudos to the judges!”  Nick Butler, The Fine Wine Review

Class 13: Cabernet Sauvignon

“Medium purple in the glass – youthful and lithe – the Hilltops region speaking softly. The nose carries serious pedigree – purity of cassis and blackberries – uncluttered by oak and artifice. A brooding core of dark soy and those blackberries tail into crisp red-berried acidity.  That word “purity” returns to the frame – cabernet unplugged.  The Show success of this wine is enviable – a lesson to many who feel that Cabernet needs a firm framework to show its best.”  Nick Butler, The Fine Wine Review

Class 14: Italian Reds

“If there’s a newish producer that’s making waves and larger than Tellurian Wines I’d like to meet them.  Importantly, the accolades consistently revolve around the quality of fruit coming off this vineyard.  It’s only fitting, then, that this Trophy has gone to a variety that shows its best when its fruit is allowed to sing. Darkest cherry hue in the glass – nothing overt or vibrant Redolent black and blue berries to the nose – cherry liqueur and sasparilla bitters.  A savoury edge. It’s intensity, when sipped, takes you by surprise.  Those same berries elevated by a crunchy, more red-berried acidity that afford it far more agility than the nose suggests. A wine that celebrates freshness of fruit and brilliant viticulture. An Australian Nero D’Avola benchmark.”  Nick Butler, The Fine Wine Review

Class 15: Other Red Varieties

“Increasingly referred to as “warm climate pinot noir”, Grenache’s star continues to rise as regions across this wide brown land continue to plant the variety. The Grampians Estate vineyard has long been recognised as a quality source of fruit, though it’s safe to say the Great Western region is not one that springs to mind when chasing quality Grenache.  That’s what makes this so exciting. It’s medium weight, at best, in the glass – translucent, crimson red. No questioning its spice and charm – bunch-derived pepper and sapidity carries beautifully into wild raspberries and strawberries – more plums than red berries on the palate. Importantly – it’s simply a delicious drink.  Nouveau leanings – uncluttered by oak. A sensational glass of fermented grape juice, beautifully identified by highly skilled wine judges!”  Nick Butler, The Fine Wine Review

Class 16: Bordeaux Blends

“While the Margaret River region has long led the way in quality expressions of this blend, its extremely rare to find a wine of this poise and class at this price point. Aristocratic and understated, the 2019 Windance Cabernet-Merlot demands only that you appreciate balance and quiet confidence. Wines like this can often be “missed” in a line up of more fruit obvious styles. While vibrant, it’s no glass stainer.  Violet purple – translucent and very euro. Judicious blending of Cabernet and Merlot renders neither overtly dominant.  It’s a terrific “left bank” example – remarkably approachable in its youth. Serious respect to the winemaking and viticulture team.”  Nick Butler, The Fine Wine Review

Class 17: Rhone Styles and Red Blends

“An instantly striking wine in the glass – dark cherry purple-red – it’s translucent edges suggest a medium weight style. This classic Australian blend carries a complex, berried nose – the Shiraz affording it a tease of plum as well as riper red berry fruits; blueberries and tobacco from the Cabernet chime in – all hovering well above toasty, quality oak.  The faintest whiff of mint. The palate continues the medium-weight theme – those mixed berries bring a crunch with them – acidity and oak in check.  Often this style carries sweetness from one variety or the other.  This is fine, and seamless. A standout expression of the style due to its agility and balance.  Perfectly ripe components blended with precision.  As with every wine produced by Naked Run, this is not a wine that’s put together as an after-thought.  It is purposeful and classy.”  Nick Butler, The Fine Wine Review

Class 18: Sweet Wines

“Golden in the glass, with a tinge of orange – time in the bottle has given it time to soften and flourish. Cumquat, orange rind, and ripest apricots – a subtle candied peel character. This is in a terrific place – unctuous and fresh without any cloying notes – bright acidity hems the high energy, honeyed citrus fruits – demanding a return for the next sip. A sensational wine from a true specialist producer – a style that suits cheese plates or the sweetest of desserts.”  Nick Butler, The Fine Wine Review

Class 19: Fortified Wine

“Deep, tawny-brown with the tell-tale olive green edges of serious, aged material.  On first swirl of the glass a rich, spicy concentration emerges – taking the shape of dark raisins, butterscotch, and sweet toffee pudding. The spirit oozes class and poise. It’s viscous and luscious without feeling heavy or anchored – beautifully fresh and complex – raisins and dried figs ahead of lifted acidity. Masterful blending from a Boutique producer that has been releasing small batch wines of excellence for decades.”  Nick Butler, The Fine Wine Review

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