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International Chardonnay Challenge - the final countdown
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Time is running out for those keen to be part of the new-look International Chardonnay Challenge. Entries have flown in from all over New Zealand, Australia, Canada, South Africa and the United States, and with entries closing next Friday, competition director Prue Younger is expecting a flurry.
“Winning gold – or even better, a trophy – in the ICC gives wineries an important point of difference in an ever-growing competitors' market,” says Younger.
New Zealand's only onshore based female Master of Wine Jane Skilton is chairman of the judging panel, who will be joined by Australians Bill Hardy and Mike DeGaris, and Canadian Rod Phillips, and some of New Zealand's best winemakers.
“The ICC recognises the world's largest selling white wine – it's a variety that is so versatile and yet very complex, offering plenty of challenge to winemakers,” says Younger.
“This really is one of the most unique competitions in the world, not just because it celebrates a single variety, but also because it is a variety that creates such opinion.”
The Gisborne-based ICC was revamped for 2009, shifting to a new date to better suit the wine industry. The new-look competition offers nine trophies, with certificates also awarded and 5000 complimentary labels offered to each medal winner by new event sponsor SATO NZ.
Entries close 27 March, with wine due by 1 May. Judging will be completed on 27–28 May, with a gala awards dinner, where New Zealand wine guru Bob Campbell will entertain all, on 29 May. There are also a number of events running in conjunction with the challenge, including lunches, tastings, workshops and presentations.
For more information visit www.internationalchardonnaychallenge.com.