Top wine award ‘shot in the arm’ for local industry

Longbush Gewurztraminer wins national award

Longbush Gewurztraminer wins national award

BEST IN SHOW: Longbush Wines sales and marketing manager Gene Walker (left) and winemaker and owner John Thorpe with the Champion Gewurztraminer award they received for The Family Company Gewurztraminer 2016 at the New Zealand International Wine Show. Picture by Liam Clayton

WINE made by a Gisborne family-run business is the toast of the industry this week after it was named best of its kind in New Zealand. Longbush Wines’ The Family Company Gewurztraminer 2016 was awarded a champion trophy at the New Zealand International Wine Show on Saturday.

Winemaker John Thorpe said being named the best gewurztraminer in New Zealand should be seen as a shot in the arm for the reputation of the region’s wine producers. Along with the Royal Easter Show and the Air NZ Wine Awards, this competition was recognised as one of “the big three” wine awards in New Zealand.

“So this is awesome. It shows the wine is really performing. The competition had about 2500 entries and there were only three of four gold medals awarded for gewurztraminer and ours was awarded the top of that class. It’s the first time we’ve won a trophy. We’ve won a few medals in the past but the real thrust is that this is good for Gisborne.”

The fruit for the wine came from the Matawhero vineyard. Mr Thorpe pointed out that Matawhero was the first to put New Zealand wine on the map when it won the top gewurztraminer at the London International Wine Show in the 1980s.

“So this is kind of going around in a circle. But in the end it comes down to the soil and the climate, and quality of the site. That’s the only way you can make wines that can reach any sort of high accolades.”

Although 2016 had not been an outstanding vintage overall, the fruit, which had been picked slightly earlier than usual due to the approach of a cyclone, “came in perfectly.”

WINE made by a Gisborne family-run business is the toast of the industry this week after it was named best of its kind in New Zealand. Longbush Wines’ The Family Company Gewurztraminer 2016 was awarded a champion trophy at the New Zealand International Wine Show on Saturday.

Winemaker John Thorpe said being named the best gewurztraminer in New Zealand should be seen as a shot in the arm for the reputation of the region’s wine producers. Along with the Royal Easter Show and the Air NZ Wine Awards, this competition was recognised as one of “the big three” wine awards in New Zealand.

“So this is awesome. It shows the wine is really performing. The competition had about 2500 entries and there were only three of four gold medals awarded for gewurztraminer and ours was awarded the top of that class. It’s the first time we’ve won a trophy. We’ve won a few medals in the past but the real thrust is that this is good for Gisborne.”

The fruit for the wine came from the Matawhero vineyard. Mr Thorpe pointed out that Matawhero was the first to put New Zealand wine on the map when it won the top gewurztraminer at the London International Wine Show in the 1980s.

“So this is kind of going around in a circle. But in the end it comes down to the soil and the climate, and quality of the site. That’s the only way you can make wines that can reach any sort of high accolades.”

Although 2016 had not been an outstanding vintage overall, the fruit, which had been picked slightly earlier than usual due to the approach of a cyclone, “came in perfectly.”

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