INDULGE

2015 Consumer Wine Awards

headerBy Tim Hanni, MW

Looking for some truly exciting and different wines to put on your list or feature by the glass? The Consumer Wine Awards results are in and, once again, demonstrate how excited everyday wine lovers can be about the wines the wine critics tend to disregard and ignore. Top winners run the gamut from Pinot Grigio from Wisconsin and Concord wine from Indiana, to Sauvignon Blanc from Napa and Zinfandel from Lodi, California. Wines with a high quality/price ratio are recognized with the “Best Bargain Wines” award acknowledging George Taber, author of The Judgment of Paris and A Toast to Bargain Wines, for his support of this tasting.

Tim Hanni MW with George Taber, author of The Judgment of Paris and A Toast to Bargain Wines.

Tim Hanni MW with George Taber, author of The Judgment of Paris and A Toast to Bargain Wines.

March 14, 2010 marked the date of this unique, consumer-oriented wine assessment and awards. The event is open to wines of every region, grape variety, type and style, and is the first to recognize and celebrate the fact every person has unique physiological and sensory differences that profoundly affect
wine and food preferences. The judges assessing each category of wine will be the very consumers who are inclined to most buy and enjoy the wines of that category. Trained experts, professional judges and wine experts are not allowed to participate as evaluators.

The mission of the Consumer Wine Awards (CWA) is celebrating the diversity of both the wines of the world and the diversity of the people who love wine. The CWA premise is that there is often an inverse relationship between the wines favored by trained wine experts and the wines that are cherished and sought after by everyday wine lovers. A quick perusal of the results below will demonstrate this immediately.

CWA team: G.M. “Pooch” Pucilowski, Tim Hanni MW, Aaron Kidder and Chris Cutler.

CWA team: G.M. “Pooch” Pucilowski, Tim Hanni MW, Aaron Kidder and Chris Cutler.

The CWA format was created by Master of Wine and sensory specialist Tim Hanni MW, G.M. “Pooch” Pucilowski, who ran the California state wine competition for 25 years, and Aaron Kidder, proprietor of Kidder Family Winery and a software and IT specialist. Chris Cutler, a technology, wine marketing and social media specialist, joined the team in 2014. The event is sponsored by the Sacramento Convention & Visitors Bureau, Lenox Glassware, Wine Shop at Home, Hint Water, 34 Degrees Crackers and Bridge Brands Chocolates. A portion of the proceeds goes to the Autism Center for Excellence in Sacramento, an organization dedicated to helping people who live in an entirely distinct extreme of the sensory spectrum.

Tim Hanni MW with Christine Trice, social phenom and creator of the website, “OMG I so need a glass of wine or I’m gonna sell my kids.” www.omgisoneedaglassofwine.com.

Tim Hanni MW with Christine Trice, social phenom and creator of the website, “OMG I so need a glass of wine or I’m gonna sell my kids.” www.omgisoneedaglassofwine.com.

This year’s tasting covered 491 wines assessed by 144 specially selected consumer judges, who were supported by a team of nearly 75 local volunteers. It featured a judging methodology and assessment system developed and refined over the past five years in conjunction with Drs. Rie Ishii and Michael O’Mahony, and a team of their star sensory science students at University of California, Davis.

As part of a new partnership with the Sacramento Convention & Visitors Bureau, 4,000 wine-loving consumers are expected to attend the awards ceremony being held on June 6, during the Grape Escape and CWA Awards. Nearly 50 wineries will be pouring and showcasing CWA award-winning wines.

Food preparation for “Match Wine to the Diner, Not the Dinner” seminar led by Tim Hanni MW.

Food preparation for “Match Wine to the Diner, Not the Dinner” seminar led by Tim Hanni MW.

The Consumer Wine Awards also provides a foundation for conducting formal wine consumer research projects, which are at the core of both their methods for assessing the wine as well as creating innovative ways to segment the wine market and promote wine enjoyment on a personal level.

Tastings were first held in Lodi in March 2008, making 2015 the seventh annual event. Over 3,500 wines have been evaluated with more than 600 consumers participating in the evaluations. The consumer evaluator selection process is also part of a consumer wine preferences study, with data collected from over 6,000 wine consumers via the consumer evaluator application. This is part of the extra value to wineries. A formal, 36-page study of preferences, attitudes and behaviors was published in 2010 and is available at www.timhanni.com.

Tim Hanni, Master of Wine, teaches one of the many sessions available.

Tim Hanni, Master of Wine, teaches one of the many sessions available.

 

For a full listing of award winning wines, go to www.consumerwineawards.com.


 BEST OF SHOW WINES

Quady Winery Essencia Orange Muscat, 2013

California, $24.99
Harvey Posert Memorial Award Best of Show Sweet Wine
Best of Sustainably Grown Grapes

d’Art Wines Zinfandel, 2012

Lodi, $24.00
Best of Class – Zinfandel
Best of Show Red Wine

Hoyt Family Vineyards Chardonnay, 2013

California, $36.00
Best of Class – Chardonnay
Best of Show White Wine


BEST OF THE MIDWEST

Oliver Winery

Concord Soft Red American, $7.50
Best of the Midwest
Best Bargain Wines (George Taber Award)


BEST OF THE EAST COAST

Gray Ghost Vineyards Adieu Vidal Blanc Sweet/Late-Harvest 2014

Virginia, $28.00
Gold – Best of the East Coast



BEST OF CLASS AWARD

3 Girls Cabernet Sauvignon 2012

Lodi, $13.99
Gold Best of Class – Cabernet Sauvignon

Barefoot Pink Moscato

California, $6.99
Gold Best of Class – Blush & Rosé

Cedar Creek Winery (Wisconsin)

Pinot Grigio 2014 American, $10.00
Gold Best of Class – Pinot Grigio

Cupcake Vineyards Muscat Sparkling 2014 Moscato

Italy D’ Asti, $14.00
Gold Best of Class – Sparkling Wines

Forest Glen CA 5192 Chardonnay 2013

California, $11.99
Gold Best of Class – White Wines

Fresno State Winery 2012, Touriga

San Joaquin County, $12.95
Gold Best of Class – Red Vinifera

Gallo Family Vineyards Merlot

California
Silver Best of Class – Merlot

Hagafen CA 5336 Sauvignon Blanc 2014

Napa Valley, $24.00
Gold Best of Class – Sauvignon Blanc

Lewis Grace Barbera 2012

Amador County, $27.00
Gold Best of Class – Barbera

Macchia Dubious Petite Sirah 2013

California, $24.00
Gold Best of Class – Petite Sirah

Nello Olivo Wines Toscanello, 2012 Sangiovese, Sagrantino, Merlot

El Dorado County, $54.00
Silver Best of Class – Red Blends

Silver Mountain Vineyards CA 5091 Pinot Noir 2012, Pinot Noir

Santa Lucia Highlands, $40.00
Gold Best of Class – Pinot Noir


BEST BARGAIN WINES –
GEORGE TABER AWARDS

Gallo Family Vineyards Black Muscat Pink Moscato

California, $4.99
Best Bargain Wines (George Taber Awards)

Green Eyes Muscat, Medium Sweet 2013 Pink Moscato

California, $8.00
Gold Best Bargain Wines (George Taber Awards)


PLATINUM AWARDS

Graveyard Vineyards Deliverance

California, chocolate-flavored port-style fortified wine, $28.00

Ripken Vineyards and Winery, 2008, Souzao, Touriga National

Lodi, $20.00

Windmill Ridge Winery, Doce Fim, fortified wine, 2007, Touriga, Souzao

Tracy Hills, $42.00

Brazin Zinfandel, 2012

Lodi, $16.99

Bushong Sweet Ellusions, fortified wine

California, $43.00

La Porta Del Paradiso, Gianelli Vineyards, varietal fortified dessert wine, 2012

Montepulciano, Tuolumne County, $35.00

Ambitious Zinfandel, Macchia, 2013

California, $18.00