Wynns Coonawarra Estate
Villa Maria Estate
Flying Fish Cove
Pooles Rock Wines
St Hallett Wines
It's Luke and Helen in 2013!
33 year old Luke Skeer from Wynns Coonawarra Estate is the Wine Society 2013 Young Winemaker of the Year.
Luke took out the top honours at a gala dinner, held at iconoclastic Sydney restaurant, Gastro Park and hosted by commentator and wine critic Nick Stock.
The wines that secured the title for Luke were his Wynns Coonawarra Estate Alexander 88 Single Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon 2010, and his Wynns Coonawarra Estate Black Label Shiraz 2010.
Two other accolades were up for grabs: the Supporters' Choice, and the peer-nominated Finalists' Choice awards. Both were snaffled by Helen McCarthy from Thorn-Clarke, for her William Randell Cabernet Sauvignon 2010 and William Randell Shiraz 2010.
Young Winemaker - now in its 13th year - attracted a total field of 69 nominees. Judging was conducted in two rounds – with industry stalwarts Ian McKenzie, Greg Melick, Travis Fuller and Toni Paterson MW responsible for the first cull to determine the ten finalists. From here, the finalists' wines were shipped to an international judging panel comprising recognised industry leaders and wine show judges from Australia and New Zealand.
The ten finalists were all in attendance at the awards dinner – along with 2012 Young Winemaker of the Year, Nick Picone, members of the judging panel, and other wine industry luminaries.
Luke and Helen received cash prizes, and glassware trophies donated by Plumm. As Wine Society Young Winemaker of the Year, Luke will be invited to participate as a guest judge on next year's panel; and will return to pass the baton to the 2014 winner.
The ten finalists for 2013 were:
- Julian Langworthy, Deep Woods Estate (Margaret River, WA)
- Andrew Quin, Hentley Farm (Barossa Valley, SA)
- Helen McCarthy, Thorn-Clarke Wines (Barossa Valley, SA)
- Troy Kalleske, Kalleske Wines (Barossa Valley, SA)
- Conor van der Reest, Moorilla (Derwent Valley, TAS)
- Clare Dry, Wolf Blass (Barossa Valley, SA)
- Luke Skeer, Wynns Coonawarra Estate (Coonawarra, SA)
- Peter Dredge, Bay of Fires (Tamar Valley, TAS)
- Coby Ladwig, Singlefile Wines (Denmark, WA)
- Alan Peters-Oswald, Nanny Goat Vineyard (Central Otago, NZ)
As Nick Stock rightly observed at the awards dinner, 'the future of the Australian and New Zealand wine industries is in excellent hands'.