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The Wine Society announces 2009 Young Winemaker of the Year finalists

The Wine Society has announced 10 finalists for the prestigious Young Winemaker of the Year Award 2009.

The Wine Society award is open to all Australian and New Zealand winemakers under 30 who are primarily responsible for the creation of the wine.

For the first time in the award’s nine year history, a Queenslander, Steven Oliver from Harrington Glen Estate, has made it into the finals.

He is joined by nine other finalists representing every state in Australia and New Zealand.

The final 10 are:

Stu Marfell from Vavasour Wines — Marlborough, NZ

Joanna Marsh from Seppelt Wines – Great Western, VIC

Steven Oliver from Harrington Glen Estate – Glen Aplin, QLD

Luke Watson from Pepper Tree Wines – Pokolbin, NSW

Jen Pfeiffer from Pfeiffer Wines – Rutherglen, VIC

Peter Kelly from Thorn-Clarke Wines – Angaston, SA

Ryan Aggiss from Flying Fish Cove – Dunsborough, WA

Nick Glaetzer from Glaetzer Dixon Family Winemakers – Cambridge, TAS

Julian Langworthy from Knappstein Wines – Clare Valley, SA

Liam McElhinney from The Ned – Blenheim, NZ

Throughout the next two months, the top two wines from each finalist will be judged by a panel of industry icons to decide The Wine Society Young Winemaker of the Year for 2009.

This year’s judges are Iain Riggs, managing director, chief winemaker and part owner of Brokenwood; Tom Carson, general manager and chief winemaker at Yabby Lake; Brian Walsh, director of winemaking for The Yalumba Wine Company; and John Belsham, owner of Foxes Island and wine consultant to Air New Zealand.

In addition, the final wines will be put to the test by The Wine Society members and some of the country’s top sommeliers to determine the members’ choice and Sommeliers’ choice awards.

The winner will then be announced at the awards dinner at the Westin Hotel in Sydney on Friday 20 November 2009.

The Young Winemaker of the Year 2009 wins a return flight to Europe with Singapore Airlines to Rome, Milan, Barcelona or Paris to take part in a vintage plus funds for their trip.

For more information visit www.youngwinemaker.com.au.

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