The National Wine Awards of Aotearoa is the country’s newest and only national wine show.
Launching this year with the purpose of identifying, celebrating and elevating excellence in New Zealand wine. It takes the place of three of New Zealand’s most prestigious wineshows, the Air New Zealand Wine Awards, Romeo Bragato Wine Awards and Royal Easter Wine Awards.
The Awards were announced on Sunday 6th of November where trophies were awarded to the best of the best, with each trophy-winning wine being poured for guests over a decadent long lunch at Auckland’s Hilton Hotel.
The Heritage Trophy is perhaps the most coveted of all. The recipient is recognised for showing excellence with the same wine over a decade.
“The Heritage category was introduced to identify and reward wines that have evidenced a capacity to develop grace and complexity over time”
“We are delighted as to us the Maude East Block Riesling embodies all that the award stands for. To win a gold medal is quite the achievement, a trophy outstanding & the East Block Riesling has won 4 trophies over the years. But to win the Heritage Rose Bowl Trophy, which recognises the style, quality, consistency and age-ability of a wine across a decade is the ultimate to us.”
Mt Maude Vineyard has a total of 1 hectare of Riesling vines, lovely mature vines planted by Dawn and Terry Wilson in 1994. Totalling 4 hectares, the Mt Maude vineyard, now 28 years old is tucked away into a sheltered valley on the eastern side of Lake Wanaka in Central Otago. It also grows Pinot Noir and Chardonnay but it is the Riesling vines that frame the Mt Maude homestead.
The Riesling vines are picked in 2 parcels, purely for their different flavour attributes, due to the vine’s aspect, clone and soil type. Those on the western side of the house make our Dry Riesling, restrained and tight in structure with its aromatics of talc and wet slate. Across the other side of the house comes East Block Riesling, being more sheltered and receiving the first of the morning light, the grapes ripen earlier. The flavours are more fruit forward and in the green apple and orange blossom spectrum, ideal for our sweeter, lower alcohol East Block Riesling.
For us Riesling is one variety that wears its heart on its sleeve. It can be brutally honest and almost righteous. It tells us exactly where it was grown, how it was grown and how it was handled in the cellar. When you get all that right, it’s worth the anguish.