Thursday, May 31, 2012

Trophy Wine Show


While some may scoff at the notion of dishing out trophies for wines, it's all jolly good fun and provides cork dorks with another wine debate. Lunch was also pretty damn good considering the number of people, although it was held at the Mt Nelson. Howard Booysen's Pegasus (Cinsault) 2011 was one of the (random) wines most enjoyed at our table - it had a touch of Chateau Rayas about it, probably the texture.

Other highlights of the show include Eikendal nearly stealing it, KWV actually winning (their star continues to rise), Jordan in the mix again, and Ultra Liquors setting new standards in value for money. Their Secret Cellar 2011 Sauvignon Blanc at ZAR25.99 received gold and the Old Mutual Discovery of the Show award.

Eikendal's Nico Grobler and OM's Joy Khaole

The Trophy is awarded to the Gold Medallist whose final score – at the trophy judging – divided by its declared price on the entry form, yields the highest index (adjusted for category). In short, it is an award for the best value Gold Medal wine, and this year may indeed have yielded the best value index in the history of the show.

The award of not one but two Gold medals in the Méthode Cap Classique category is a first in the history of the show. The Villiera Woolworths Vintage Reserve Brut 2007 took the Trophy, and the Du Preez Estate’s Hendrik Lodewyk MCC NV, the other Gold.

KWV's top results came from winning the Miele Trophy for Best Chardonnay, the Best White Wine Trophy, as well as the Trophy for the Best Museum Class Fortified. In addition KWV SA collected 10 Silver and 16 Bronze medals. Eikendal won the Old Mutual Trophy for the Best Red Wine, the Riedel Trophy for the Best Bordeaux-style Red Blend and a Gold Medal for its Chardonnay. Jordan won the American Express Trophy for the Best Cabernet Sauvignon and the Best Chenin Blanc Museum Class Trophy; and Vergelegen swept up two Sauvignon Blanc Semillon Blend Trophies – one for the Museum Class.

The newly named Tony Mossop Trophy for the Best Cape Port – which recognises the role played by the late Tony Mossop in developing the Cape Port industry – was awarded to Mike Neebe, a shareholder of the property formerly owned by Tony Mossop, for the Axe Hill Cape Vintage 2009.

The Harold Eedes Trophy for the Show's Best Chenin Blanc went to Tokara's Miles Mossop for the Tokara Chenin Blanc 2009. Like Tony Mossop, the late Harold Eedes was an iconic figure in the Cape wine industry – the founder of Wine Magazine and a driving force behind the improvement in wine quality which this year's Show results celebrate.

Trophy Winners
The Fairbairn Capital Trophy for the Most Successful Producer: KWV SA
The Old Mutual Trophy for Best Red Wine: Eikendal Classique 2009
The Old Mutual Trophy for Best White Wine: KWV The Mentors Chardonnay 2011
The Old Mutual International Judges’ Trophy: De Grendel Shiraz 2010
The Old Mutual Trophy for Best Sparkling Wine (Méthode Cap Classique): Villiera Woolworths Vintage Reserve Brut 2007
The Old Mutual Trophy for Best Dessert Wine (unfortified): Delheim Edelspatz Noble Late Harvest 2011
The Old Mutual Discovery of the Show: Secret Cellar Sauvignon Blanc 2011 (Ultra Liquors)

The American Express Trophy for Best Cabernet Sauvignon: Jordan Cabernet Sauvignon 2009
The British Airways Comair Trophy for Best Shiraz: Painted Wolf Shiraz 2009
The Grande Roche Trophy for Best White Blend: Thelema Sutherland Viognier Roussanne 2009
The Harold Eedes Trophy for Best Chenin Blanc: Tokara Chenin Blanc 2009
The Miele Trophy for Best Chardonnay: KWV The Mentors Chardonnay 2011
The Riedel Trophy for Best Bordeaux-style Red Blend: Eikendal Classique 2009
The Tony Mossop Trophy for Best Cape Port: Axe Hill Cape Vintage 2009 
The Best Museum Class Chenin Blanc: Jordan Chenin Blanc 2007

The Best Merlot: La Bri Merlot 2010
The Best Pinotage: Rijk’s Private Cellar Pinotage 2008
The Best Pinot Noir: Chamonix Pinot Noir Reserve 2010
The Best Sauvignon Blanc (wooded): Nederburg Two Centuries Sauvignon Blanc 2009
The Best Sauvignon Blanc (unwooded): Kleine Zalze Family Reserve Sauvignon Blanc 2010
 The Best Sauvignon Blanc Semillon Blend: Vergelegen GVB 2010
The Best Museum Class Sauvignon Blanc Semillon Blend: Vergelegen 2007
The Best Semillon: Ormonde Ondine Semillon 2010
The Best Museum Class Semillon: Cape Point Vineyards Semillon 2008
The Best Museum Class White Blend: Lomond Snowbush 2008
The Best Museum Class Fortified Wine: KWV Reserve Port 1929

Other Gold Medals
Boschendal 1685 Shiraz 2009
Buitenverwachting Sauvignon Blanc Husseys Vlei 2011
De Grendel Shiraz 2010
Deetlefs Estate Pinotage 2010
Dombeya Altus 2007
Eikendal Chardonnay 2011
Fable Jackal Bird 2010
Fleur du Cap Chardonnay Unfiltered 2011
Fleur du Cap Noble Late Harvest 2010
Manley Semillon/Sauvignon Blanc 2010
Hendrik Lodewyk Méthode Cap Classique NV
Le Joubert 1070 2009
Nuy Red Muscadel 1989
Nuy White Muscadel 1997
Remhoogte “Honeybunch” Reserve Chenin Blanc 2011
Rustenberg Five Soldiers 2010
Steenberg Sauvignon Blanc Reserve 2011
Stellenzicht Golden Triangle Pinotage 2010
Strandveld Adamastor 2010
Sumaridge Chardonnay 2010

For list of Silver Medal Winners click here
For List of Bronze Medal Winners click here

The 2012 Old Mutual Trophy Wine Show saw virtually the same number of entries as the 2011 event, but yielded a dramatically higher number of Gold and Silver medals. At the post-judging industry feed-back session, the regular panellists – as well as the overseas judges with prior experience of the competition – commented on the markedly better quality of the top wines in most of the classes.

This is a clear indication of the ever-increasing number of fine wines available on the local market. In all, 42 Gold medals were awarded (compared with 25 in 2011) and of these, seven were from Museum Class entries (compared with five in 2011).  Most of the major classes were represented among the Golds, though the absence of a Riesling among these top awards was a disappointment.

The five Chardonnay Golds, four Sauvignon Blanc Golds and three Chenin Blanc Golds speak for the strength of the white wine categories. Red wines were well represented, though without the same obvious depth of talent. Many of the classes had a single Gold medallist, with Shiraz (the largest class of entry at this year's show) and Pinotage the exceptions. Jeremy Borg's Painted Wolf Shiraz 2009 – winner of the British Airways Comair Trophy for the Show's best Shiraz (and one of only three Gold medals in the 136-wine strong Shiraz class) – comes with its own conservationist message.
The Old Mutual International Judges' Trophy – for the wine which, in the opinion of the three international judges, was the best wine at the trophy judging – was awarded to the De Grendel Shiraz 2010. In theory, this wine will represent the Show’s top wine from an international perspective.

Chairman of the Judges, Michael Fridjhon, was enthusiastic about the overall results: “We are accustomed to seeing a general year-on-year improvement and adjust our standards to take this into account. We call this 'raising the bar' and talk confidently about how a Silver medal of five years ago would only be a Bronze today. That said, we were simply unprepared for the wealth of fine wines across many of the classes – a result reflected in the highest number of Golds and Silvers ever awarded at this show.” 

Within the next two weeks, a series of tastings will be taken to six major centres countrywide including a Masterclass® in Windhoek.  Wine lovers in Cape Town and Johannesburg will be able to taste 218 (141 in 2011) Trophy, Gold, Silver and some Museum Class medal winning wines at public tastings.  Each show visitor will receive a copy of the Icons - which contains details of all the winning wines, together with vintage information, advice about wine service and chapters contributed by all three international judges. Icons will appear with next week’s issue of Financial Mail and with the July issue of WineLand.

Tickets at the door or computicket


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