The Christchurch|South Island 'Best Of Wine Tourism' awards ceremony was held on December 7 during the Christchurch|South Island Food and Wine Festival. Local and regional officials in attendance were Mayor Lianne Dalziel of Christchurch, Mayor Kelwin Coe of Selwyn District, Deputy Mayor Marie Black of Hurunui and Councillor Malcolm Lyall of Selwyn.
The 2014 winners were:
Wine Tourism Services: Selwyn Food and Wine Trail
Selwyn Food and Wine Trail is a collection of artisan wine and food producers in Canterbury’s beautiful Selwyn district. Experiences range from unique and memorable wine tastings with growers, to sampling fresh regional produce and destination cafes and restaurants serving local food and fine wine. “Entering, and subsequently winning, the Wine Tourism Services category for the Best of Wine Tourism Awards has exposed us to a much larger market which has enabled us to highlight our unique offer and just how important wine tourism is to the Selwyn District” said Trail coordinator Amanda Mitchell.
Architecture and Landscapes: Northburn Station
Northburn Station in Central Otago won the Best of Wine Tourism Award for Architecture and Landscapes, this year. General Manager Paul Tudgay said “Owners Jan and Tom Pinckney showed great vision in creating this building and landscape and to get recognition for that is great. We believe that wine tourism is still underdeveloped in New Zealand and that these awards are vital to raise standards and encourage innovation.” Northburn Station is only five minutes from Cromwell and surrounding wineries, 35 minutes to Wanaka, 40 minutes to Queenstown International Airport and 50 minutes to Queenstown.
Sustainable Wine Tourism Practices and Innovative Wine Tourism Experiences: Brancott Estate Heritage Centre
Brancott Estate Heritage Centre is the home of Brancott Estate wines, the original Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc, located at Brancott Vineyard, pioneers of Sauvignon Blanc plantings in Marlborough.
Brancott Estate Heritage Centre won the Sustainable Wine Tourism Practices Award for its guided wine experience ‘The Living Land’. This experience enables visitors to discover in one hour how Brancott Estate wines are created with the environment in mind as well as have the opportunity to view the rare and endangered New Zealand native falcon.
Brancott Estate Heritage Centre also won the Innovative Wine Tourism category for the 2014 Awards, in recognition of its ‘Mastery of Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc’ programme. This wine experience, which includes a tutored wine tasting, presents the pioneering spirit and history behind the creation of a wine style which has since enchanted the world. The Brancott Estate Heritage Centre was designed and built using environmentally-friendly techniques, and includes a restaurant, specialising in fresh, seasonal produce, cellar door offering wine tastings and tours, and premium hosting facilities.
Kathy Hughes, Brancott Estate Heritage Centre Manager comments “Wine activities are an important part of what New Zealand has to offer international visitors and as a pioneer of wine tourism, we are thrilled with these latest awards that are a fantastic achievement by the Brancott Estate Heritage Centre team and testament to the quality customer experience offered to all visitors.”
In addition, Brancott Estate Heritage Centre received an international Best Of Wine Tourism award at a ceremony held in the Culinary Institute of America’s Greystone Campus in St. Helena, California on November 7 during the annual general meeting of the Great Wine Capitals Global Network.
New Zealand’s representative on the GWC international judging panel was Joanna Fountain, a senior lecturer in Tourism Management at Lincoln University.
“Brancott Estate Heritage Centre provides an exceptional educational experience. The setting is awe inspiring and the welcome and service is highly professional and customer-focused. They are worthy winners and a great ambassador for wine tourism in the South Island.”
About the Great Wine Capitals Global Network
Founded in 1999, the Great Wine Capitals Global Network is an alliance of ten internationally renowned wine regions – Bordeaux, France; Cape Town|Cape Winelands, South Africa; Christchurch|South Island, New Zealand; Florence, Italy; Mainz|Rheinhessen, Germany; Mendoza, Argentina; Porto, Portugal; Bilbao|Rioja, Spain; San Francisco|Napa Valley, USA and Valparaiso|Casablanca Valley, Chile.
The Best Of Wine Tourism awards serve as an industry benchmark for excellence and recognize leading wineries and wine-tourism related businesses within each Great Wine Capital that have distinguished themselves in areas such as innovation, service and sustainable practices.
For more information visit greatwinecapitals.com.
Written by Decanter