New Zealand's wine-drinking capital to host 2010 Air New Zealand Wine Awards

23 April 2010

New Zealand Winegrowers has today announced that Auckland, the country’s largest wine consumption market, will play host to the 2010 Air New Zealand Wine Awards dinner in November.

The Awards dinner, which will see New Zealand’s top wine makers and industry figures gather together in celebration of top quality wine production, will be held at SKYCITY Convention Centre on Saturday 20 November.

Chris Yorke, Global Marketing Director for New Zealand Winegrowers, organisers of the prestigious awards, said that with the crucial role Auckland plays in the New Zealand wine industry, it is a fitting venue for this year’s Awards.

“Not only does Auckland have a rich winegrowing history, but it is now the largest local market for wine consumption, and is a trend-setting location for both wine and food,” Mr Yorke said.

“Auckland is also the commercial base for many of New Zealand’s largest wine companies and is home to many of our loyal sponsors, so we’re excited to be staging the awards there this year.”

Judging will also take place in Auckland, at Mount Smart Stadium from 1-3 November.

Attracting entries from wineries from New Zealand’s ten key winegrowing regions, the Air New Zealand Wine Awards is New Zealand’s most prestigious wine awards competition. The competition’s top prize, the Air New Zealand Champion Wine of Show Trophy, is hotly contested. 18 additional trophies are also up for grabs including the Bell Gully Champion Sustainable Wine Trophy.

The wine is judged on three factors: colour and clarity, aroma and bouquet, and taste and general impression. Based on these factors, a panel of local and international judges award elite gold, gold, silver and bronze medals. Sustainably produced wines are awarded pure elite gold, pure gold, pure silver and pure bronze medals.

“It’s a rigorous judging process that is designed to ensure we deliver the top quality wines that the Air New Zealand Wine Awards are renowned for,” Mr Yorke said.

“When consumers select a wine with an Air New Zealand Wine Awards sticker, they know they are purchasing one of New Zealand’s best.”

Entry details will be sent to New Zealand wineries in August with entries closing on 17 September.