Local wineries toast multiple wins as 20th annual New World Wine Awards Top 50 list is revealed


One of the most anticipated wine lists of the year is finally here, with today’s announcement of the 2022 New World Wine Awards Top 50 wines under $25.

The list reveals the best-of-the-best from the 20th annual wine competition, where expert judges swirled, sniffed, tasted, debated and scored their way through more than 1,200 different wines to determine the 50 top-ranked Gold-medal winners.

These wines are now available at New World stores nationwide*, but for wine-drinkers who still aren’t sure where to start, New World Wine Awards Co-Chair of Judges Sam Kim says this year’s Top 50 list is a particularly handy guide.

“The New World Wine Awards is all about taking the guesswork out of choosing a great wine at a great price, and this year’s Top 50 is especially helpful because it includes so many repeat winners from over the competition’s 20-year history.

“These are multi-winning wines and wineries that have made the grade time and again, proving their excellence year after year, bottle after bottle.

“Their achievements are great news for wine-drinkers who are on the lookout for quality and consistency at an affordable price, and well worth a toast.”

Giesen Estate Riesling crowned with Gold again

A win for the Giesen Estate Riesling 2021 has brought this wine’s Gold-medal tally to seven and cemented it’s claim as the winningest wine in the New World Wine Awards so far**.

The Giesen team are well known in New Zealand and around the world for their expertise in Riesling, which they’ve been making for 34 years using Waipara and Marlborough-grown grapes.

Chief Winemaker Duncan Shouler says it’s fantastic to have another Gold-medal in the trophy cabinet for what his team refers to as ‘New Zealand’s favourite Riesling’. “We work hard each year to get every aspect of this wine just right. It’s balanced, juicy and versatile, and we hope this win will inspire more wine-lovers to give Riesling a go alongside their next summer platter or barbeque.”

Savvy Sauvignon, brilliant bubbles and more…

This year Rapaura Springs Reserve Sauvignon Blanc 2022 and Wairau River Estate Sauvignon Blanc 2022 have returned to the list for the fifth time, with Rapaura Springs also taking the Champion Sauvignon title for the second time.

Despite being accustomed to the winner’s circle, Rapaura Spring winemaker Michael Bann says this year’s recognition is particularly appreciated by him and his team after a challenging vintage. “It was one of those years that put our skills to the test and it's great to see our picking decisions and hard work pay off once again.”

Chardonnay devotees don’t need to worry either. Chardonnay sages at Church Road have taken the Champion Chardonnay and White Wine of the Show titles with their Church Road McDonald Series Hawke's Bay Chardonnay 2021, headlining a six-strong range of options from Hawke’s Bay, Gisborne and Marlborough.

Also returning to the Top 50 as a Champion is the Lindauer Vintage Series Brut Cuvée 2017, a “seriously good” drop according to Kim, and incredible value at under $20 for a bottle-fermented Kiwi bubbly that could easily rival your favourite French Champagne.

It’s flanked by the always-dependable drop, Verde Brut, and returning star, the Graham Norton Prosecco DOC -- a trendsetting collab between Waikato based Invivo Wines and the comedian and television personality of red chair fame.

In reds, boutique wine company SOHO Wines is celebrating a momentous third year in the Top 50 with their SOHO Bobby Marlborough Pinot Noir 2021 taking out Champion Pinot Noir and Champion Red Wine of the Show.

Founder Rachael Carter says: “We are truly passionate about the wine we make and we’re so excited to earn two Champion titles for our Pinot Noir, and to see ‘Bobby’ get front and centre with thousands of supermarket shoppers.”

Winningest wineries spotlight for quality, consistency and trying new things

Scanning across the winners list, several wineries will be well known names, standing out for their multiple Top 50 placings over the years.

Villa Maria boasts an impressive haul of 38 Gold medals in these awards since 2008, Saint Clair Family Estate is hot on their heels with 21, and Mount Riley comes third with 19. Better still, all have two delicious signature variety wines in the Top 50 in 2022.

For those with more adventurous tastes, Kim says there is plenty new to explore, too.

“For every classic on the list this year, there is also something new and different to try.

“The Mount Riley Marlborough Albariño 2022 offers wine-lovers a totally new taste from this recognised brand, with a new white wine variety that is just starting to take hold in New Zealand vineyards and Kiwi wine palates.  

“Rosé fans can choose from both New Zealand and French winning wines this year, and if you want a real adventure there are red wines from all around the world including Tempranillo, Malbec, Garnacha, and Sangiovese.”

The Top 50 list is attached with this release and the full results are available here.

*Liquor selling stores. **Based on results between 2008-2022. Detailed records are not available for prior years.


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