The annual Air New Zealand Wine Awards Gala Awards Dinner was held in Nelson for the first time ever on Saturday night. The most glamorous trophy of the night, the Champion Pinot Noir Trophy, was awarded to Brightwater Vineyards 2014 Nelson Pinot Noir. Six hundred and thirty wine industry personnel attended the glitzy event held at a dressed up Saxton Stadium.
Tony Southgate, Winemaker at Brightwater Vineyards, accepted the trophy. In his speech he said “As a small company, this really is a great moment for us. At Brightwater Vineyards, we all focus on the same goal, and that is to make elegant, concentrated wine, full of personality. We put a huge amount of man hours into our vineyards across all of the varietals we grow to ensure we are starting with the best possible fruit, and that makes receiving an award like this one, extra special.”
The Pinot Noir was grown very close to the Awards Dinner venue in Hope on the Waimea Plains.
“This is absolutely fantastic,” said Gary Neale, Co-owner of Brightwater Vineyards. “As a small producer you dream of winning a Pinot Noir trophy. It inspires you. And this one, The Air New Zealand Wine Awards Trophy is the most prestigious of them all!
This Pure Elite Gold Medal is the fourth Gold Medal to be awarded to our 2014 Nelson Pinot Noir. It is also the same wine that was enjoyed by HRH Prince Charles and Camilla when they were here in Nelson earlier this month.