By Mark Gauert
Wines from California swept Best of Show and Best of Class categories in South Florida’s home-grown American Fine Wine Competition, with judges awarding a record number of double gold and gold medals among the 750 wines entered this year from vineyards throughout the United States.
“This may be the one wine competition, since it is by invitation only, that places quality over quantity,” says Shari Gherman, president and co-founder of the national competition, judged Jan. 17-18 at Florida International University’s Chaplin School of Hospitality & Tourism Management in North Miami. “We are very pleased that there were so many outstanding wines for us to pursue this year.”
While wines from other states – notably Oregon but sometimes surprises from Ohio and Virginia – have been uncorked in the top winner categories in previous years, California wines captured all the Best of Class and Show categories this year. Many were from the 2012 vintage year, considered one of the finest recent harvests in the state’s long wine-growing history.
The top winners list appear on the facing page, and the complete list can be found on our website, cityandshore.com. All 750 wines, including the gold medal winners, will be available to sample with a gourmet dinner at the AFWC Charity Gala on Friday, April 8th, at the Hyatt Regency Pier 66 in Fort Lauderdale. The event, benefiting the Dolphins Cancer Challenge, will include a silent and live auction and music. Advance purchase price is $300 per person. For more information call 561-558-2345 or visit americanfinewinecompetition.com.
American Fine Wine Competition
Best of Show & Best of Class Winners
BEST OF SHOW RED
2013 Luna Vineyards Canto Super Tuscan, Napa Valley, Calif., $70.
BEST OF SHOW WHITE
2014 Rivino Estate Pinot Blanc, Mendocino, Calif., $25.
BEST OF SHOW SPARKLING (TIE)
NV Breathless Blanc de Noir, Geyserville, Calif., $30.
2012 Signal Ridge Brut, Anderson Valley, Calif., $25.
BEST OF SHOW DESSERT WINE
2013 Castello di Amorosa Gewürztraminer Late Harvest, Napa Valley, Calif., $39.
BEST OF SHOW ROSÉ
2014 Muscardini Rosato di Sangiovese Alpicella Vineyards, Sonoma Valley, Calif., $24.
BEST OF CLASS SAUVIGNON BLANC
2013 Arkenstone Estate Sauvignon Blanc Howell Mountain, Napa Valley, Calif., $48.
BEST OF CLASS CHARDONNAY
2013 Castello di Amorosa Chardonnay Reserve Bien Nacido Vineyard, Napa Valley, Calif., $38.
BEST OF CLASS PINOT NOIR
2013 Hahn Pinot Noir SLH, Santa Lucia Highlands, Calif., $30.
BEST OF CLASS MERLOT
2012 Anthem Estate Merlot Mt. Veeder, Napa, Calif., $70.
BEST OF CLASS SYRAH
2012 VIE Syrah Thompson Vineyard, Santa Barbara County, Calif., $45.
BEST OF CLASS PETIT SIRAH
2012 Brown Estate Petite Sirah,
Napa Valley, Calif., $50.
BEST OF CLASS CABERNET SAUVIGNON
2012 St. Supéry Cabernet Sauvignon Rutherford Estate, Napa Valley, Calif., $100.
BEST OF CLASS BORDEAUX BLEND
2012 Jean-Charles Boisset Red Blend McCarthy Vineyard, Napa, Calif., $350.
BEST OF CLASS CABERNET FRANC
2013 Crocker & Starr Cabernet Franc St. Helena, Napa Valley, Calif., $80.
BEST OF CLASS ZINFANDEL
2013 Rombauer Vineyards Zinfandel, Calif., $30.