Entries open for 2018 New World Wine Awards

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Do you know who makes the best wine in New Zealand? The search is on for new champions as the creators of our favourite drops are invited to put their best glass forward for the 2018 New World Wine Awards, the only New Zealand wine show that sees an increase in sales for the top wines as a direct result of their winning medals.

On a mission to connect wine-loving shoppers with the best quality affordable wines, New World rewards the Top 50 medal winners with nationwide distribution and publicity support through 135 stores, where the winning wines are eagerly anticipated by consumers each year.

To be eligible, entries must retail for $25 or less and there must be at least 5,000 bottles (3,000 for niche varietals) available to meet consumer demand across the country.

Julie Ibbotson, marketing manager at Saint Clair Family Estate Wines which was awarded both the Champion White Wine and Champion Red Wine of the show in 2017, says a win at the New World Wine Awards is a fantastic achievement that can deliver well beyond the prestige of a Gold medal alone.

“Saint Clair Family Estate has a company mission to create world-class wines that exceed customer expectations and being a New World Wine Awards winner has further emphasised our focus on quality. Our Champion titles enhanced the perception of the Saint Clair brand with New World shoppers and in turn helped increase sales across our entire portfolio of wines.

“Success at the New World Wine Awards is also one of the many ways we can educate consumers about our winemaking expertise and varietals, giving them greater confidence in purchasing our wines.”

Alongside boosts to brand and sales, winning winemakers will also enjoy the status of a medal judged by an independent panel of wine experts using the same internationally recognised 100-point system as other leading wine competitions.

Chair of judges Jim Harré will return to the New World Wine Awards for the 11th year running to oversee the panel of 16 judges, which has grown again this year to keep pace with an ever-increasing number of entries. Tan Yin Hsien, Master of Wine, wine educator and owner of Singapore-based wine school Taberna Wine Academy, will join as an international judge.

Now in its 16th year and established as one of New Zealand’s largest and most influential wine shows, Mr Harré says that like a great wine, the awards continue to improve with age.

“The integrity and value of the New World Wine Awards is a winning combination that grabs the attention of winemakers and wine-lovers alike.

“It gives medal-winning wines a real advantage in-store, and shoppers the invitation to try new brands and varietals with confidence.”

Trust in the award results is evidenced by how quickly some of the winning wines are snapped off the shelves. Following the announcement of the 2017 New World Wine Awards results last year, more than 345,000 bottles of the Top 50 wines, with a retail value in excess of $4.9m, sold within the first six weeks.

To be in the running to earn a top spot, entries to the New World Wine Awards must be received by Friday 22 June.  All details can be found online here.

As introduced in 2017, this year’s competition will also include opportunities for selected New Zealand wines that retail for over $25.

The New World Wine Awards judging will take place over three days at Wellington’s Westpac Stadium on 31 July, 1 and 2 August. Wines will be awarded Gold, Silver and Bronze medals, with the best in each category re-tasted to determine the Champion of each varietal, plus the overall Champion Red and Champion White. Results will be announced later in the year.

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