A Central Otago Pinot Noir has won the top prize at the inaugural New Zealand Wine of the Year Awards.
The Maude Pinot Noir Central Otago 2017 won the New Zealand Wine of the Year Champion trophy presented by O-I New Zealand, as well as scooping up the Fruitfed Supplies Champion Pinot Noir trophy and the Best Wine - Central Otago regional trophy.
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The awards were presented at the New Zealand Wine Awards Dinner in Wellington on Saturday night.
Chair of Judges Warren Gibson said the Maude Pinot Noir 2017 was a very classy example of Pinot Noir in this year's competition.
"A delicious and complex young wine - juicy and light on its feet," he said. "Showing beautiful refinement, powdery tannins and loads of controlled power."
The producer of the champion Pinot Noir, Maude Wines, is a family-owned wine company who first planted vines on their Mt Maude vineyard in 1994, against the backdrop of Lake Wanaka in Central Otago.
The revamped New Zealand Wine of the Year Awards competition focuses strongly on celebrating the grape grower and their single vineyard wines, as well as championing New Zealand wine excellence on a larger scale, with a particular lean towards vineyard excellence and regionality.
"The gold medal list and resulting trophies show that our evolving wine industry is beginning to display a very strong relationship between variety, style and wine region," said Mr Gibson.
The evening, hosted by Jesse Mulligan and Kanoa Lloyd, recognised the New Zealand Wine of the Year Awards winners, as well as other industry achievements including Young Viticulturist of the Year, Young Winemaker of the Year and the New Zealand Winegrowers Fellows for 2018, Mark Nobilo, Jane Hunter and Ivan Sutherland.
This year's competition saw almost 1400 wines entered.
New Zealand Wine of the Year Awards 2018 - Top Trophies
Best Organic White Wine
Carrick Bannockburn Riesling Central Otago 2017
Best Organic Red Wine
Carrick Bannockburn Pinot Noir Central Otago 2015
Best Single Vineyard White Wine
Isabel Estate Wild Barrique Chardonnay Marlborough 2017
JF Hillebrand New Zealand Best Single Vineyard Red Wine
Craggy Range Pinot Noir Te Muna Road Vineyard Martinborough 2016
Label and Litho Limited Best Open White Wine
Dashwood Sauvignon Blanc Marlborough 2018
QuayConnect Best Open Red Wine
Waipara Hills Pinot Noir Rosa Waipara Valley 2018
Best Wine of Provenance
Auntsfield Cob Cottage Chardonnay 2016, 2010, 2006
New Zealand Wine of the Year Champion Sponsored by O-I New Zealand
Maude Pinot Noir Central Otago 2017