Keuka Spring wins 'Winery of the Year'
TRI-COUNTY AREA (8/12/16)--Keuka Spring Vineyards in Penn Yan was named the "Winery of the Year" in the 2016 Governor's Cup Competition at the 31st New York Wine & Food Classic, held Tuesday and Wednesday, Aug. 9 and 10 in Watkins Glen. Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo announced the winners, which included several area Finger Lakes wineries who also won "Best of Category" and "Best of Class" awards.
Owner Judy Wiltberger said she was "thrilled and humbled," by winning the "Winery of the Year" award, adding it is a culmination of a very good year the winery has been having so far..
"The 'Winery of the Year' award will top it off nicely," Wiltberger said.
This year's top prize, the Governor's Cup trophy, was presented to Billsboro Winery from the Finger Lakes Region for their 2013 Syrah wine.
"From Long Island to the Finger Lakes, New York vineyards continue to produce some of this nation's finest wine," Cuomo said. "Over the past six years, this administration has worked tirelessly to support this industry and help it thrive the way we all knew it could. Given all the products being showcased today, these efforts are clearly paying off. I want to congratulate all the Governor's Cup winners and encourage all New Yorkers to think local when buying their next bottle."
The classic is organized by the New York Wine & Grape Foundation and is open to the more than 400 New York wineries across the state. This year's competition included 951 individual entries, including 893 New York wines, 20 hard ciders and 38 craft spirits from several regions, including Long Island, Hudson Valley, Finger Lakes and Western New York.
"The New York Wine & Food Classic is recognized nationally for the quality of the judges, superb organization, and promotional value," President of the New York Wine & Grape Foundation Jim Trezise said. "We applaud the winners in a very competitive event, as well as the strong support of Gov. Andrew Cuomo and his administration for the New York wine industry."
The entries were awarded based on blind tastings by 22 expert judges from across the country, as well as one judge from London. Judges included prominent wine writers, restaurateurs, retailers and wine educators. Judging panels determined the initial awards and top-scoring wines were then evaluated by all 22 judges for the Best of Category awards and the Governor's Cup.
This year, a total of 71 Double Gold, 106 Gold, 386 Silver, and 250 Bronze medals were awarded. Double Gold medals require unanimity among the judging panel, whereas Gold medals require a majority vote.
The following were the "Best of Category" winners from the area:
• Best White Wine - Keuka Spring Vineyards 2015 Gewürztraminer.
• Best Red Wine - Billsboro Winery 2013 Syrah.
The following were the "Best of Class" winners from the area (These awards are given to Double Gold or Gold medal wines in classes of at least 10 wines.):
• Best Gewürztraminer - Keuka Spring Vineyards 2015 Gewürztraminer.
• Best Dry Riesling - Keuka Spring Vineyards 2015 Humphreys Vineyard Riesling, Single Vineyard Series.
• Best Medium Dry Riesling - Dr. Konstantin Frank 2015 Riesling, Semi-Dry.
• Best Medium Sweet Riesling - Keuka Spring Vineyards 2015 Semi Sweet Riesling.
• Best Sweet Riesling - Wagner Vineyards 2013 Riesling Select, Estate Grown and Bottled.
• Best Overall Riesling - Keuka Spring Vineyards 2015 Semi Sweet Riesling.
• Best Vinifera/Hybrid White Blend - Keuka Spring Vineyards Celebrate.
• Best Cayuga - Swedish Hill Winery 2015 Cayuga White.
• Best Traminette - Seneca Shore Wine Cellars Traminette, Estate Bottled, DeMarco Vineyards.
• Best Vidal - J.R. Dill Winery 2015 Vidal Blanc.
• Best Hybrid White - Hazlitt 1852 Vineyard White Stag.
• Best Niagara - Americana Vineyards Crystal Lake.
• Best Vinifera Rosé - Wagner Vineyards 2015 Rosé of Cabernet Franc.
• Best Syrah - Billsboro Winery 2013 Syrah.
• Best Spirit - Finger Lakes Distilling McKenzie Bourbon Whisky.
• Best Port - Goose Watch Winery 2015 Finale White Port.
• Best Ice Wine - Sheldrake Point Winery 2014 Riesling Ice Wine, Wild Ferment, Estate Bottled.
• Best Hybrid Sparkling White - Swedish Hill Winery Blanc de Blancs.