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Results of Blind Tasting 10,000 Wines Revealed at The Rees Hotel Queenstown

December 4, 2019 Accolades No Comments Email Email

The Rees Hotel hosted the Winestate Wine of the Year Awards for the second time in Queenstown on Friday as an active advocate of world class winemaking.

“We chose to back this preeminent event due to its utmost integrity given it really is one of the toughest peer reviews of the fruits of our wine industry,” says Mark Rose, Chief Executive of The Rees.

“No-one blind tastes as many varietals as this. They audit such a massive quantum. Couple that with the credibility of the judging panel that includes the Head of the Wine Institute of Australia – and you know you’ve got the quintessential Australiasian ‘go-to guide’ for the best of the best.”

Winestate is Australasia’s oldest wine magazine after first going to press in 1978.

The competition judges 10,000 New Zealand and Australian wines over 16 award categories. The comprehensive blind tasting is also free of any commercial affiliations or incentivising.

“This embodies serious tasting. We don’t sell any wine so there’s no conflict of interest,” says Publisher, Peter Simic. “If you win an award in this context – you really have earnt it.”

“The Rees embodies excellence with a phenomenally professional and strong wine culture. It’s known as a stalwart supporter of the industry so having the competition here was a superb fit.”

For the second year running, Villa Maria took out the top prize for its 2018 Hawke’s Bay Reserve Chardonnay. The judging uses a star rating system that reflects a range rather than a specific point score.

“It’s a world class wine that totally stands out. In my opinion it’s right up there with a white Burgundy,” Simic says. “Congratulations to its winemaker, Nick Picone voted Winemaker of the Year and the entire operation as it definitely deserves being recognised as the Winery of the Year.”

The Publisher praises the performance of New Zealand saying it usually gets in the top 5 in the much feted award ceremony. “It’s always been a Central Otago Pinot however not so this year but these things do ebb and flow,” he says.

See full official results below.

Subject to availability for a limited time only The Rees will be offering the Wine of the Year Villa Maria, Reserve Hawke’s Bay, Chardonnay, 2018 in True South Dining Room its international award winning restaurant featuring a seasonal menu created by New Zealand culinary Olympian, Executive Chef Corey Hume.

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