Aging of wine took it up to champion status
Central Otago wines shone at the 2012 Romeo Bragato Wine Awards held in Blenheim, dominating the pinot noir section of the awards and winning two of the competition’s distinguished trophies. Nine Central Otago wines were awarded gold medals at the awards, including Cromwellbased winery Rockburn Wines who also took home the Richard Smart Trophy and Reserve Champion Wine and the Mike Wolter Memorial Champion Pinot Noir Trophy for its 2010 Pinot Noir. Central Otago Winegrowers Association president James Dicey said it was a fabulous result and great to see a strong outing from Central Otago wines. It was also special that Rockburn Wines had brought the Mike Wolter memorial trophy back to Central Otago, Mr Dicey said. ‘‘Mike was an influential person in the wine industry in Central Otago,’’ he said. Central Otago Pinot Noir chairman Rudi Bauer said Mr Wolter identified the terraces and valley below the Pisa Range as being highly suitable for pinot noir. He was convinced that great wine would one day grow there. ‘‘He had the vision and a passion that all winegrowers in the region aspire to,’’ Mr Bauer said. He died after an accident in 1997. Rockburn Wines winemaker Malcolm Francis said this year’s awards showed how much aging wine can make a difference, after the same wine received a bronze medal last year. Central Otago viticulturist and James’ father Robin Dicey was inducted as a Fellow of New Zealand Winegrowers.
Winners: Rockburn Wines winemaker Malcolm Francis with the Richard Smart Trophy and Reserve Champion Wine and the Mike Wolter Memorial Champion Pinot Noir Trophy.