Winners of 2017 James Halliday Grenache Challenge announced

Judge praises quality of the wines

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Wirra Wirra Winery at McLaren Vale on the Fleurieu Peninsula in South Australia

Wirra Wirra Winery at McLaren Vale on the Fleurieu Peninsula in South Australia [©South Australian Tourism Commission]

The James Halliday Grenache Challenge (JHGC) gathered varietal Grenache wines from around Australia for a competitive tasting to celebrate and elevate the variety.

The challenge invited producers from all Australian wine regions to participate, encouraging an honest gauge of Australia’s winemaking form and to catch the styles and movements developing across our landscape.

Kay Brothers 2016 Griffon's Key Grenache emerged the standout winner, with Bethany Wines 2016 Old Vine Grenache, 2016 Clos Clare 'The Hayes Boy' Grenache and Willunga 100 'The Hundred' Clarendon Grenache just a single point behind.

2017 James Halliday Grenache Challenge Judges included David LeMire MW, Nick Ryan, Andrew Thomas, Fiona Donald, Emma Symington MW, Charlie Seppelt and Margot Muir.

Chair of Judges, David LeMire MW has praised the quality of wines entered.

"The Grenache wines were exciting to judge. The brilliant resource of mature vines seems to be more valued by growers, makers, and drinkers than ever before,” said Mr LeMire.

James Halliday notes the standout success of the Kay Brothers Griffon's Key Grenache as the 2017 title winner.

"The initial Challenge was everything I hoped it would be.  It was inevitable that McLaren Vale, its spiritual (and earthly) home would emerge as the most successful region, but there was considerable style diversity both in McLaren Vale and elsewhere.  The exceptional success of the iconic Kay Brothers Amery Vineyards was obviously the standout individual result, but it was Grenache that won the day," said Mr Halliday.

Gold medals went to:

  • Kay Brothers 2016 Grffon's Key Grenache
  • Bethany Wines 2016 Old Vine Grenache
  • Clos Clare 2016 The Hayes Boy Grenahe
  • Willunga 100 'The Hundred' Clarendon Grenache
  • Kay Brothers 2016 Basket Pressed Grenache
  • Reynella 2016 Basket Pressed Grenache
  • Wirra Wirra 2016 The Absconder Grenache
  • Z Wine 2016 Rustica


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November 13th, 2017
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