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News posted on Thursday, 26 November 2015

Adam Cotterell awarded Len Evans Tutorial Dux of 2015
The Len Evans Tutorial Qantas Dux for 2015 is Adam Cotterell from Melbourne. Cotterell is the Retail Sales and Events Manager at City Wine Shop Melbourne which is obviously a training ground for the LET with a previous Dux and two scholars coming from City Wine Shop. As Dux of the 2015 course, Cotterell has now been guaranteed judging positions at two of Australia’s most premier wine shows, the Sydney Royal Wine Show and the National Wine Show in Canberra.

SA grapegrowers to go into arbitration with unions over working conditions
The South Australian Wine Industry Association will follow through on a submission to the Fair Work Commission to change the modern award rate for casual employees working in the wine sector. The SA Wine Industry Association wants to halve the minimum engagement time casual employees are entitled to work, from four to two hours.

Fiano best white for McLaren Vale?
Italian variety Fiano may be the “closest to being McLaren Vale’s white” one producer as postulated. Speaking to a group on a recent Wine Australia trip, Corrina Wright of Oliver’s Taranga suggested that the future for the Italian variety in McLaren Vale was very strong indeed, along with other Mediterranean grapes such as Vermentino.

Thomas Wines opens cellar door
Iconic Hunter Valley winemaker, Andrew Thomas of Thomas Wines, has opened a dedicated cellar door, just ahead of his 30th consecutive Hunter Valley vintage. Consumers can for the first time, taste and purchase the full range of Thomas Wines, including the popular Kiss Shiraz and Braemore Semillon, direct from the source at the cellar door, located within the Tuscany Wine Estate complex on the corner of Hermitage Road and Mistletoe Lane, Pokolbin.

Villa Maria named NZ Winery of the Year
For the 14th time in 18 years, Villa Maria has been named New Zealand Winery of the Year by leading Australian wine magazine Winestate at an exclusive awards ceremony held in Remuera, Auckland. The winery’s Group Chief Winemaker Nick Picone also received the sought after ‘NZ Winemaker of the Year’ title - an award he has achieved at other shows twice already in his career. It’s no wonder UK publication Drinks Business included Nick in their ’30 winemakers under 40 to watch’ roundup in 2014.

Oyster Bay launches Pinot Gris
Oyster Bay is adding to its range of wines in Australia with the launch of a Hawke’s Bay Pinot Gris. The new wine will add to the current Oyster Bay range which includes Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Merlot, Sparkling Cuvée Brut and Sparkling Cuvée Rosé. The company said that the Pinot Gris “represents a significant opportunity”, with the Pinot Gris category “currently in strong growth and being driven by the premium segment.

Solar powers heart of winery
The carbon footprint of your next glass of wine could soon be trimmed after a major South African wine manufacturer unveiled a project to reduce its annual carbon emissions by 1200 tons of carbon dioxide. A solar project announced yesterday by Douglas Green Bellingham is set to cut the company's annual carbon emissions by the same amount as driving a small car from Johannesburg to Cape Town 5550 times.

Eagle vineyard helps make Idaho wine-industry history
Martha Cunningham helped establish her vineyard more than a decade ago, but the Eagle Foothills remains the frontier of the Idaho wine industry. Wednesday morning, however, it began to make headlines throughout U.S. wine industry. The Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB) established the Eagle Foothills American Viticultural Area — the first AVA entirely within Idaho’s borders.

Swartland faces challenging 2016 harvest
Continuing dry weather in South Africa’s Swartland will make for a “challenging” 2016 harvest according to the CEO of one of the region’s biggest producers, who has confirmed that volumes will be reduced. Speaking to the drinks business at the World Bulk Wine Exhibition in Amsterdam this week, Zakkie Bester, CEO and cellarmaster at Riebeek Cellars, said the very dry weather in the region was “not normal” and that production volumes would be affected. “It’s going to be challenging for the Swartland because of the very dry weather we had which was not normal."

Changing attitudes fuelling frothy growth for sparkling wines
The holiday season is fast approaching and once again the annual ritual of focusing on sparkling wine has begun. While all producers of sparkling wine have done a terrific job making what was once almost exclusively a wine of celebration more commonplace, the truth of the matter remains that sales soar over the holidays, and sadly, people still refer to more or less all sparkling wines as Champagne. I hope the irony is not lost on them as they increasingly look outside of Champagne to satisfy their bubbly desires.

Wine Tasmania releases 2016 wine trails guide
The 2016 edition of Tasmania's Wine Trails has been launched, providing a comprehensive guide to the island’s key cellar doors, vineyards and complementary experiences, with an expanded focus on Tasmania’s seafood offering. In launching the 2016 edition, Sheralee Davies, Wine Tasmania CEO, highlighted the continuing interest in the island’s wines, as well as the important relationship between Tasmania’s wine experience and complementary dining, food, accommodation and tourism offerings.





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