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News posted on Tuesday, 21 June 2016

Orange wine producers band together to air concerns over new tax
THE NEW wine equalisation tax (WET) could have grave consequences for many of Orange's wine producers. Along with the Wine Federation of Australia, Orange producers want the government to retain the $500,000 WET rebate cap and not reduce it to $290,000 and also bring forward from July 2019 to July 2017 changes to exclude bulk and unbranded wine from the rebate.

A little less conversation, a little more action please
When Tourism Australia launched the ‘Restaurant Australia’ strategy in 2015, Nathan Gogoll was impressed to see the efforts to put food and wine in focus. But he questions whether the Australian wine industry actually got any traction from the promotions. TOURISM AUSTRALIA RESEARCH, conducted across 15 of Australia’s key tourism markets, shows ‘great food, wine, and local cuisine’ is a major factor influencing holiday decision-making (at 38 per cent), ranking just ahead of world-class beauty and natural environments (37 per cent).

Applications open for Pontifex Scholarship
The Daniel Pontifex Memorial Trust, with the support of Wine Australia, is now accepting applications for the 2016 Daniel Pontifex Scholarship. The scholarship offers a rising hospitality star professional placements in some of London’s finest restaurants as well as the opportunity to visit wine regions to further their career and knowledge.

Profile: Dave Powell
Dave Powell is larger than life. The loud-mouthed Australian is big in every way possible – size, volume, ambition, but he makes wines of surprising delicacy. I meet with him on a Tuesday morning at private members’ wine club 67 Pall Mall in St James’s. Running late, he apologises for leaving me hanging a further five minutes while he nips outside for a smoke. Dressed in chinos and a white shirt with his hair tied back in a ponytail, the 53-year-old admits that the staff had to lend him a blazer to meet the club’s formal dress code. “At least they managed to find one that fits,” he quips.’

Meet the 12 finalist of the Young Guns of Wine
Whether it’s bold and innovative techniques in the vineyards, pushing winemaking boundaries or experimentation with non-traditional varieties, Australian wine’s new breed are prepared to throw out the old rules and step forward with a fresh attitude and approach. The desire to embrace the funky and gritty art of winemaking has led to wines that are truly exciting and capture a revolution in the glass. These are the people and the wines that are celebrated with the Young Gun of Wine Awards.

The future of New Zealand wine
A smattering of the great and the good of the UK wine trade turned up for a debate last Tuesday (June 14), titled ‘What direction should New Zealand winemaking take for the future’, sponsored by Villa Maria and arranged by its UK agent, Hatch Mansfield. The ‘elephant in the tasting room’ is: ‘Is New Zealand a one-trick pony (Sauvignon Blanc). 

New Zealand Winegrowers Extends Sommelier Scholarship to the UK & Ireland
New Zealand Winegrowers is offering three sommeliers from the UK and Ireland the opportunity to visit New Zealand to participate in an invite only sommelier scholarship event, with a select group of international sommeliers. The one day Sommelier Summit will see the group hosted by local sommeliers, Cameron Douglas MS and Stephen Wong MW. Cameron and Stephen will lead tastings and discussions on current trends, as well as presenting some unique examples of New Zealand wines that have limited availability.

Majestic sales pop but Naked Wines acquisition leaves a hangover
Majestic Wine has reported the first improvement in its sales figures in four years as it made a “good start” to its three-year turnaround plan. Overall sales rose 41.3pc to £402.1m in the year to March 28, while Majestic Retail enjoyed like-for-like sales growth of 4.8pc.

Climate Change From A Global Wine Industry Perspective
Among its latest reports, the Journal of Wine Economics (JWE) presents a paper with the climate change views of respected wine industry pros spanning five continents. The overall wine industry consensus is that global climate change is real, but in the vineyard, the results are neither uniform nor clearcut, nor can they strictly be attributed to the climate.

Restaurants yank popular Californian wine over environmental controversy
Justin Vineyards’ bulldozing of hundreds of oak trees has uncorked some disapproval among San Luis Obispo County restaurateurs and wine fans, who are making their feelings known with their wallets. The vineyard manages land owned by Estate Vineyards LLC, a subsidiary of the multinational Wonderful Company, and recently cut down the oaks to make room for more grapes on their 750 Sleepy Farm Road property, just west of Paso Robles.

BREXIT: The UK decides
As Britain’s referendum on membership of the European Union approaches, Andrew Jefford looks through his wine glass at the campaign... In four days’ time, we will know the result of the UK’s referendum on continuing membership of the European Union. I’d like to write that the referendum ‘will be over’ – but that depends on the margin of victory for the winning side. 

AB Mauri



WID 2017