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No Longer Boutique!

New Zealand winery SOHO WINE entered the Boutique Wine Awards this year and took off three bronze medals for their Pinot Noir. Great to see that they are now toasting their success as the first three 40 foot containers filled with 4000 cases of SOHO wine, leave our shores, bound for the USA so no…

Down on the Farm at Crittenden Estate

The second generation of Crittendens seem just as determined as their father Garry to build on the family reputation.  With a fine crop of third generation winemakers recently arrived on the scene, the very personal style of doing business looks set to continue for quite some time. One of the family’s favourite album photographs is…

Genuine Boutique and Handpicked

In 2005, Mount Pierrepoint Estate was thrust on to the wine stage when Huon Hooke handed them the top Pinot Noir trophy for their 2004 vintage at the Boutique Wine Awards Presentation.  The same year they also won the Estate Grown and Produced trophy.  Most of their vintages have won awards and received first-rate reviews,…

FAQ about 5 Nations Wine Challenge

The FIVE Nations Wine Challenge commenced in 2003 (with its head office in Sydney) as the Tri Nations Wine Challenge and James Halliday as the Chairman. In 2011 Argentina and Chile joined Australia, New Zealand and South Africa to make five! The judges are: Huon Hooke (Australia), Michael Fridjhon (South Africa), Bob Campbell MW (New…

Where Eagles Fly

South Africa’s Eagle’s Nest wine farm sits high in the mountains of Constantia.  Their 2007 Shiraz won the trophy at the Five Nations Wine Challenge in 2011.   Ross Anderson visited Stuart Botha the winemaker and sent this report from high up on the road overlooking the property. “Stuart invited me up to the farm…

Lunch with the Ambassador

The Embassy of the Argentine Republic and Sommeliers Australia presented a wine tasting and food matching session in Brisbane yesterday. The AABW’s Judith Kennedy went along as a guest and the Ambassador Pedro Villagra Delgado opened the event and passionately described his intentions to make a difference by encouraging his country’s wine producers to export…

All Things that Sparkle…

Workshops on Sparkling Wine & the Lark Hill Pale Ale Join Winemaker & Brewer Chris Carpenter for an exploration of the world of sparklings. The workshop will cover production of Sparkling wines, mashing of malted grain for the Lark Hill pale ale, and a demonstration of disgorgement – the final process in finishing Traditional Method…

Let’s Drink to a Big Red! – Ben Riggs Outpost Cabernet 2010

  Ben Riggs accepted the Dan Murphy’s Wine of Show trophy for his outstanding Cabernet. Awards Chairman Huon Hooke wrote: ” Very good depth of youthful red-purple colour, lush blackberry cabernet varietal aromas with no sign of leafiness, but definitely varietal.  Oak beautifully handled and discreet and tannins velvet smooth and simple, yet providing structure. …

Profile of a Winner! McLaren Vale’s Willunga 100

Meet Kate Day, Tim James and Director Denise Hill. Boutique Wine Awards double trophy winner Willunga 100.  Huon Hooke’s judges said of the Tithing Grenache 2010 “Beautiful blue/red colour with spicy, juby aromas, lots of oak and fine sweet fruit with strong mineral elements.  The sweet and savoury elements of the variety show through”  and…

Which Box will Contain the Trophy Wines?

James Audas Senior Steward for the Boutique Wine Awards commences the two day task to unpack, sort and label all of the entries before the three days of  judging.  He and another five Stewards spend long days making the conditions perfect for Huon Hooke and his judging teams. Behind the scenes the Stewards (all trained…

New Tickets Released

Due to unprecedented demand for the Grand Tasting Event featuring all 540 wines in the Five Nations Wine Challenge we have moved the event into a larger function room at the Four Seasons Hotel and a few more tickets have been made available. This is a limited release so first come first served!  Some of…

What a Great Opportunity this is.

Huon Hooke reports on the Five Nations Wine Challenge: Blind tasting really is a great leveler. It throws up results that cannot be predicted. One might expect a Chilean to favour Chilean styles of wine; an Australian to prefer Aussie styles, etcetera, but it ain’t necessarily so. This is part of the fun of participating…

The Future of Dry Red

Global climate change will eventually have a lot more to say about the kinds of wines we will be drinking in the future than anything humans can do.  So says Californian wine columnist and wine judge Dan Berger. Read more in Dan Berger’s Vintage Experiences. The Weekly Wine Commentary, September 13, 2012. Download Article

Government Grants for the Wine Industry

With the grape and wine industry contributing $5.5 billion to the national economy and employing over 30,000 Australians; it is one of Australia’s most favoured and rewarded industries. The grape and wine industry dates back to 1788 when the first vineyards were planted and industry has never stopped growing since. It is now recognised as…

Wines on Taste and Wines for Sale!

Friday 26 October, Five Nations Wine Challenge Tasting and Wine Sale. All of the 550 wines entered in the Challenge such as those pictured are on taste at the SOLD OUT event.  There is a growing list of those wines that are for sale – not all – but some.  The following list will be…

A Gem from the History Books!

Commencing in 1996 the Association (that’s us) started “Meaning Business”.  We held annual public wine festivals as well as the Boutique Wine Awards.  This image is from the 1997 festival held at the Renaissance Sydney Hotel (now the Marriott) and some 80 boutique companies came with their new releases and their old favourites to show…

South Africa’s Success in 2009

Haskell Vineyards’ Winemaker Rianie Strydom received the Red Wine of Show trophy from Huon Hooke at the Presentation at the Four Seasons Hotel in 2009.  This year Huon will be presenting trophies to all of the five nations now taking part in the challenge and yes some of them will be coming to Sydney from…

Blast from the past with Craggy Range

2007 Craggy Range won both Red Wine of Show and Wine of Show in what was then the Tri Nations Wine Challenge with their Le Sol 2005 syrah.  Judith Kennedy held the trophy presentation event at the Yacht Club in Auckland that year and Master of Wine Bob Campbell officiated at the event. They are…


2017 Boutique Wine Show



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