Quick Sips — 01 February 2013
2013 American Fine Wine Competition winners

By Mark Gauert

Wines from California and Oregon uncorked Best of Show and Best of Class honors at the American Fine Wine Competition, a homegrown South Florida competition now in its sixth year.

This year’s 24 judges smelled, sipped – and ultimately spit – 630 wines from wine-growing regions throughout the nation over the two-day competition at Florida International University in North Miami. The wine experts, sommeliers and educators – many based at South Florida restaurants and resorts – awarded Best of Show/Class honors in the white wine category to a 2009 White Riesling from Hagafen Cellars in Napa Valley, Calif. A 2010 Pinot Noir from The Donum Estate winery in Sonoma took Best of Show/Class honors in the red wine category. A 2008 Mumm Napa took Best of Show in the Sparkling Wine category; and a 2011 Castello di Amorosa Gewürztraminer was Best of Show for Late Harvest Dessert Wine.

“We also had 112 double gold medal winners,’’ said AFWC President Shari Gherman, who announced the results Friday in Fort Lauderdale. “I think that says a lot about the prestige and exclusivity of this competition, and it’s an honor to showcase these world-class wines here in South Florida.”

All the wines from the competition will be served at a four-course charity dinner prepared by chefs Norman Van Aken, Dean Max, Angelo Elia and Christina Machamer at the American Fine Wine Competition Gala, April 4 at the Boca Raton Resort & Club. Tickets are $300 for the dinner, which includes a sparkling wine reception, live and silent auctions for many of the wines, live music and dancing.

Proceeds benefit the Diabetes Research Institute and 4Pets Charities. For tickets call 561-504-8463, or visit americanfinewinecompetition.org. (An additional $10 service fee is charged for tickets purchased online).

 The Best of Show/Class results follow; a list of double gold medalists is available here.


Best of Show/Class

Other White Category: Hagafen Cellars, “Prix,’’ 2009 Rancho Wieruszowski White Riesling, Napa Valley, $36, hagafen.com

Best of Class

Pinot Gris/Grigio: Soléna Estate, 2011, Willamette Valley, Ore., $20, solenaestate.com

Sauvignon Blanc: Pine & Brown, 2011, Napa Valley, $26, pineandbrown.com

Chardonnay: Frostwatch Vineyard, 2010, Bennet Valley, Sonoma County, $30, frostwatch.com


Best of Show/Class

Pinot Noir: The Donum Estate, 2010, Donum Ranch Vineyard, Carneros, Calif., $72, thedonumestate.com

Best of Class

Other Red Blend Category: B Cellars, Blend 24 Older Tuscan, 2009, Napa Valley, $49, bcellars.com

Zinfandel: Paul Simeon Collection, St. Sophia, 2009, Lodi, Calif., $25, paulsimeonwines.com

Petite Syrah/Sirah: Frank Family Vineyards, 2009, Napa Valley, $65, frankfamilyvineyards.com

Syrah/Sirah: Bartholomew Park Winery, 2008, Sonoma Valley, $40, bartpark.com

Merlot: V. Sattui Winery, 2010, Napa Valley, $28, vsattui.com

Red Bordeaux Style Blend: Blackbird Vineyards, Arise, 2010, Napa Valley, Calif., $50, blackbirdvineyards.com 

Cabernet Sauvignon: Promise, Winston Hill Vineyard, 2008, Rutherford, Napa Valley, $225, promisewine.com


Best of Show/Class

Mumm Napa, 2008, Devaux Ranch, Napa Valley, $38, mummnapa.com.


Best of Show/Class

Castello di Amorosa, Gewürztraminer, 2011, Anderson Valley, Mendocino County, Calif., $35, castellodiamorosa.com

Photo above: Judges gather at the end of the two-day judging in January to photograph the top seven reds – pinot noir, cabernet sauvignon, syrah, petit syrah, zinfandel, merlot, red blend – they selected as best in their class or show.

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