Emily Gaspard-Clark from Spy Valley becomes Mercurey NZ Young Winemaker of the Year 2019
Congratulations to Emily Gaspard-Clark from Spy Valley Wines in Marlborough who took out the National Final to become
the Tonnellerie de Mercurey NZ Young Winemaker of the Year 2019.
Following the regional finals held around the country in August, the three finalists competed on 17th September at NMIT
for the title. The other finalists were Kate Franklin from Sacred Hill representing Hawke’s Bay and Jordan Moores from
Felton Road representing Central Otago.
It was a tough day as the three were stretched and tested on their winemaking knowledge and skills at a very high level.
Firstly they had a week to prepare a presentation entitled: Is New Zealand wine export growth sustainable?
“It seems our future is in good hands” said Nicky Grandorge from New Zealand Winegrowers and National Co-Ordinator of
the competition. “They had all undertaken some serious research and really thought about the future of our industry,
offering very well thought out plans and ideas so we can remain sustainable for many years to come.”
They then had a general wine knowledge and essay paper, an interview and a CAPEX paper. This was followed by wine
judging and running fining trials in the laboratory. Farmlands laid on a gourmet BBQ lunch to keep everyone going.
Their final challenge was to give a speech to the large crowd at the Awards Dinner held at Wither Hills. Their topic was
“What makes your region the best wine producing region in New Zealand?” Needless to say there were some very passionate
speeches, each proud of the uniqueness of their region and what it contributes to the NZ wine industry.
The calibre of contestants was very high and they all won at least one of the tough sections, with Emily finally gaining
the most points across the board.
Not only did Emily win the prestigious title of Tonnellerie de Mercurey NZ Young Winemaker of the Year 2019, but the
trophy which is a bespoke mini barrel. She also won an educational trip to Burgundy, a $2000 Programmed Property
Services Education Scholarship, a Riedel decanter, a mixed case of wine from Winejobsonline and cash. She will also be
an Associate Judge at the NZ Wine of the Year competition, receive a personal tasting experience with a Villa Maria
senior winemaker and attend the NZ Wine Awards in November.
The national final will rotate around the regions each year, so next year will move to either Hawke’s Bay or Central
Otago. This adds to the great community feel of the programme, as senior members of the industry also get involved with
judging and enjoy supporting these passionate, emerging young winemakers.