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14/10/2008

Eric Semmler awarded 2008 Riverland Winemaker of the Year

The Riverland Wine Show Society in conjunction with JMA Engineering is pleased to announce that Eric Semmler was awarded as the 2008 JMA Riverland Winemaker of the Year.

The JMA Riverland Winemaker of the Year is awarded to a Riverland based winemaker who has contributed to industry development and winemaking excellence.

Presented with the award at the Presentation Dinner of the 2008 Riverland Wine Show, Semmler said that the Riverland should consider itself to be a premium winegrape growing and winemaking region given that it is not only capable, but regularly produces wines that are recognised the world over.

Semmler’s background in the wine industry began in Victoria, initially in Rutherglen at All Saints Wines and later; Brown Brothers in Milawa, and Auldstone Cellars in Glenrowan. He was then to take up the position of Fortified Winemaker at Berri Estates which was filled for a decade, and during this time he oversaw the making of a host of award-winning wines. He recently left Berri Estates and founded his own winery; 919 Wines. Mr. Semmler is also a past Chairman of the Riverland Wine Show Society.

His special interest has remained in fortified wine production although is keenly pursuing the use of Spanish, Portuguese , and Italian winegrape varieties in Australian warm climate winemaking.

Mark Johnson of JMA Engineering was delighted to present the award to Semmler noting the high calibre of past winners and congratulating Semmler as an unquestionably appropriate inductee to the list.

Past winners of the JMA Winemaker of the Year are: Grant Semmens (Thachi Wines), Kevin Pfeiffer (formerly Austvin Wines), Paul Kassebaum (Constellation Wines), Bill Moularadellis (Kingston Estate Wines), John Angove (Angove Family Winemakers), and Warwick Billings (Angove Family Winemakers).

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