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Voyager Estate viticultural team takes out inaugural award

Voyager Estate has been named the first recipient of the 2006/07 Viticultural Excellence award.

The Margaret River Wine Industry Association established the Viticultural Excellence award to recognise the importance of quality fruit in the production of the region’s famed fine wines.

Judges A/Prof Mark Gibberd, Chair of Viticulture and Oenology at Curtin University of Technology and Mr Mike Melsom, Owner and Viticultural Consultant of Merum Wines in Pemberton said they were impressed at the quality of the applications and the care taken in their presentation.

Lead by Viticulturalist Steve James, the Judges specifically noted Voyager Estate’s level of commitment to staff, with the training and interaction between vineyard and winemaking proving to be an effective and complimentary team.

The Judges were unanimous in their praise for the detail the Voyager team gave to planning, particularly with respect to matching soil type and variety.

Voyager’s extreme focus and attention to detail directing the management of the vineyard for quality fruit production was also highlighted, as was the emphasis on minimising the environmental impacts of production.

Mr James said the team was thrilled to win given the outstanding standard of viticultural practice throughout the Margaret River region.

A Voyager Estate company representative will receive a return trip to France, courtesy of Margaret River Wine TravelClub, to study French viticultural practices. That person will be asked to share their learnings with other Margaret River viticulturalists when they return.

"In sponsoring the Viticultural Excellence award, the Margaret River Wine TravelClub is pleased to continue its financial support of the MRWIA and the Assocation's members," Marketing Coordinator Robyn Mitchell said.

Applicants were judged on written submissions and site inspections during 2007 vintage.

The Margaret River Wine Industry Association is a voluntary not-for-profit organisation representing the Margaret River wine industry.

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