ASVO announces 2019 industry winners

The Australian Society of Viticulture and Oenology (ASVO) last night announced the Awards for Excellence winners for 2019.

  • 2019 ASVO Viticulturist of the year – Dr Kerry DeGaris
  • 2019 ASVO Winemaker of the year – Corrina Wright

2019 ASVO Viticulturist of the Year


Dr Kerry DeGaris is the chair of the technical sub-committee of the Limestone Coast Grape and Wine Council Inc. and has been instrumental in facilitating and conducting research and extension in the Limestone Coast.

The projects led by Kerry have enabled growers to better understand and manage challenges including Eutypa, iron bacteria in irrigation water, salinity and Cabernet berry shrivel. Her work has also included winemaking trials from local rootstock trials.

“It is an honour to be nominated and to have the ability to promote the objectives of the ASVO” said Dr DeGaris.

2019 ASVO Winemaker of the Year


Corrina Wright has dedicated herself to the development of innovative wine styles made from alternative grape varieties on her historic family vineyard.

Wright led the planting of the first Mencia in Australia, on the back of being an early adopter of alternative varieties, with a particular focus on planting varieties that are heat and drought tolerant, with high natural acidity and with a different flavour profile to traditional varieties.

With a clear commitment to the future of the industry, her leadership on cultural change for the wine community has also included her advisory board position on the Australian Women in Wine Awards (AWIWA).

Her contribution to the creation of the ‘Hear Me Roar’ Shiraz – the world’s first wine produced solely by women – aided fund raising efforts for women in wine, with 100% of profits from its sales going to assist women in the Australian wine industry.

“Innovation and contribution to the wider wine and regional communities has been a strong theme in the previous generations of my family, and I am very honoured to be continuing this great tradition,” said Wright.

ASVO Award recipients are nominated by ASVO-appointed selection committees comprising individuals who themselves are distinguished in the fields of viticulture and oenology and who demonstrate exceptional leadership ability and vision.

Paper of the Year and Dr Peter May Award winners

Dr Daniel Molitor, from the Luxembourg Institute of Science and Technology, was awarded the Dr Peter May Award – an award that was introduced in 2018 to honour the late Dr Peter May who was the founding editor of the Australian Journal of Grape and Wine Research (AJGWR). The award acknowledges the author(s) of the most cited original research paper published in the AJGWR over the previous five years.

The paper, Late frost damage risk for viticulture under future climate conditions: a case study for the Luxembourgish winegrowing region, reports the results of investigation into the future frost risk in the Luxembourgish winegrowing region by assessing the effect of projected future climate conditions on the timing of budburst and last frost date.

The Paper of the Year awards are conferred annually to authors of exceptional research articles published in each calendar year in the AJGWR. Selection committees of six industry experts judged 55 research papers to shortlist the papers where the potential application of the research on viticultural or oenological practices was considered to have the most impact.

The Viticulture Paper of the Year was awarded to Dr Zhenhua Cui for the paper, Validation of micrografting to identify incompatible interactions of rootstocks with virus infected scions of Cabernet. The paper details a study of the Northwest Agriculture and Forestry University in Shaanxi, China.

“The paper describes the use of three grafting techniques to identify incompatibility issues with scion material infected with either grapevine leafroll-associated virus 1 (GLRaV-1) or GLRaV-1 and grapevine virus A (GVA),” said the selection committee.

“The findings in this paper have enormous relevance to the next 10 years of Viticulture at least, as we try to address the various issues we have with incorrect varieties, market demand and quality potential.”

The Oenology Paper of the Year was awarded to Dr Janez Kosel from the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering, University of Ljubljana for their paper titled Maximum residue limit of fungicides inhibits the viability and growth of desirable non‐Saccharomyces wine yeasts.

Dr Kosel’s paper was selected by the committee because it demonstrated interesting information about the influence of fungicide residues, which remain in the grape must, on viability of some non-Saccharomyces yeasts which significantly contribute the complexity of wine aroma.

For a list of previous ASVO Awards winners, please visit

ASVO Honours two valued members of the Australian wine industry

At last night’s Awards for Excellence, ASVO president Dr Anthony Robinson announced two new fellows of the Society: Dr Richard Hamilton and Gary Baldwin.

ASVO fellows are bestowed with this honour for their particularly outstanding and meritorious contribution to the grape and wine industry and to the Society.

“The selection of Fellows was particularly difficult this year because of the extremely high calibre of candidates within the ASVO membership,” said Dr Robinson.

“The collective wisdom that both these people encapsulate is extraordinary as is the diversity of their background and experience.”

Richard Hamilton has made an outstanding contribution to the Australian grape and wine industry over a 39-year career in technical, consultancy and extension leadership positions within government, corporate and private enterprises.


Hamilton was recognised by the board for demonstrating an outstanding and enduring commitment to viticultural development and to the objectives of the ASVO over several decades.

Gary Baldwin is one of Australia’s most respected wine professionals, a founding member and past president of the ASVO from 1993 – 1995.

Baldwin has had a career as a successful winemaker, wine consultant, wine show judge, conference speaker and mentor to many in the Australian wine industry.

Baldwin is recognised as a committed and passionate specialist for the wine sector contributing regularly to official wine publications and the development of wine show standards on the ASVO Wine Show Technical Advisory Committee.


His voluntary service to the wine industry has been significant and reflects the values and aspirations of the society and of a fellow.

The ASVO announced in June that winemaker, wine judge and winemaking consultant Dr Tony Jordan had been made a Fellow of the society. Following his death in August, his wife Michele formally accepted the invitation at last night’s awards.

A list of ASVO Fellows can be found at: