The Lake County Winery Association is proud to announce the 2009 People’s Choice Wine Awards. This event marks the first ever wine competition exclusively showcasing Lake County wines and branded wines that specifically state a Lake County AVA on the label.
The competition commenced on August 25th at Langtry Estates & Vineyard where a prestigious panel of wine experts from across the country judged 168 wines to select the top three finalists in each category. Finalists will be announced at the 10th Annual Lake County Wine Auction Gala, presented by the Lake County Wine Alliance, on September 19th . This Gala charity event for nonprofit organizations and agencies benefit the Arts, Health and Community of Lake County.
“We are thrilled to launch and sponsor this one of a kind wine competition here in Lake County,” says, Kaj Ahlmann, Chairman of the Lake County Winery Association. “This unprecedented competition gives wineries the opportunity to expose their wine brands to a distinguished group of wine professionals, who influence millions of wine enthusiasts worldwide, as well as consumers, whose wine opinions and recommendations are vastly becoming even more powerful through the technologies of blogging and social networks. This event is the perfect way to let consumers spread the word about Lake County’s outstanding wines.”
Lake County Winery Association is honored to have such a distinguished panel of wine judges to select the finalists in each category including: Steve Heimoff, Wine Enthusiast; Deborah Parker Wong, The Tasting Panel; Traci Dutton, Culinary Institute of America; Doug Frost, Master Sommelier and Master of Wine; Chris Sawyer, “Sommelier to the Stars”; Tom DiNardo, Sommelier and Wine Appraiser; Bob Foster, California Grape Vine; Alan Goldfarb, Appellation America; Mike Dunne, Sacramento Bee and Martha Dunne, Winegigs.com. Judges will individually sample and score the wines which will then be tallied up and the top 3 scores in each category will advance to the People’s Choice consumer tasting. Select wines that do not advance to the final judging will receive an Award of Distinction. Ray Johnson, author, wine writer and wine educator will preside as Tasting Director for the judges segment of the competition.
Participating wineries submitted their entries by the August 19th deadline in a variety of categories including Best of Varietal Type, Best of Region, Best of Show, Winery of the Year and Critics Choice. All Lake County wines made in and outside the county using Lake County grapes were encouraged to enter.
Six Sigma Ranch hosted the consumer event on Oct. 3rd from 11am 4pm. Tasting and voting was open to the general public who had the opportunity to taste the finalists in each category side by side then immediately vote for their top pick.
For more information and winners please visit www.lakecountywineries.org.