Pepperjack triumphs at The Great Australian Red Challenge

October 16, 2017
By Alana House

Pepperjack has claimed the trophy for Best Wine of Show at the Great Australian Red Challenge with its Pepperjack Certified Shiraz Cabernet 2016. 

Pepperjack also took out Best Wine $25-$60 and Best Shiraz-Dominant Blend, and was awarded Best Winery of Show.  

The label made its debut at The Great Australian Red in 2015, when its inaugural 2013 vintage won the trophy for the Best Wine $25-$60.

Now in its 12th year, The Great Australian Red is a wine competition created by globally renowned wine critics Tyson Stelzer and Matthew Jukes, designed to highlight the blend that defines Australia: Shiraz Cabernet. 

The wines are assessed by two panels of six judges simultaneously, then the two panel chairs compare notes with the chairman to consensually agree on the medals. The Great Australian Red is free of the constraints of region, price and style, drawing together great examples of all styles, at all price points, from every Australian state.

The Great Australian Red 2017 attracted 96 entries, which were judged at the National Wine Centre in Adelaide by Matthew and Tyson alongside PJ Charteris (chair of judges), Tim James, Ian Hongell, Doug Govan, Sam Wigan, Jeremy Maxwell, James Parham, Peta Baverstock, James Hamilton, Nick Knappstein and Anna Hooper. 

Pepperjack won medals for all five of its entries in the competition, and was subsequently awarded The Riedel Trophy for the Best Winery of Show, narrowly pipping Jacob’s Creek and past winner Wolf Blass for this hotly-contested Trophy. 

Barossa born and bred, Pepperjack winemaker Richard Mattner said: “To be judged the best Great Australian Red in such a tough and fantastic line up of wines is humbling and a real honour.  

“The blend of Shiraz and Cabernet is quintessentially Australian, with each variety adding complexity, and layers to the other.  I really enjoy making Pepperjack Certified Shiraz Cabernet, not only for the varietal blend, but also using this fruit from multiple regions within South Australia; McLaren Vale, Langhorne Creek and Barossa”. 

Big win for Jacob’s Creek

Jacob’s Creek took out Best Wine over $60 and Best Cabernet-Dominant Blend for its Expedition Barossa Valley Cabernet Shiraz 2015. 

While once regarded as a budget brand, Jacob’s Creek has spent the past seven years repositioning itself as a premium product. The winning wine is part of a new Asia Pacific travel retail label from the label. 

Stonyfell takes out Best Wine under $25

Stonyfell Wines was awarded Best Wine under $25 for its 2015 Baton Shiraz Cabernet, which was created by Bryan and Nigel Dolan, the only father and son winemaking team to have both won the inaugural Jimmy Watson trophy.

Chief winemaker Nigel Dolan said it was an honour to be recognised so highly among the best of the best in Australian red wines.

“Awards like this truly recognise the hard work and commitment of our winemaking team, and endorse the suitability of the Langhorne Creek wine region for producing beautiful Australian wines with outstanding Shiraz Cabernet blends,” he said.

“To be able to follow in the footsteps of my father who played an integral role in the creation of the Baton Shiraz Cabernet and see it recognised for its high quality and drinkability is a real privilege. I look forward to now carrying the baton and continuing the family legacy.”



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