The verdict is in and the best Kangaroo Island wine, as judged at the 2019 Kingscote Show, is the False Cape Wines Riesling.
False Cape Wines also won the Best Red with their The Captain Cabernet Sauvignon and Best White with their Riesling, which went to be named the Champion Exhibit.
This year saw more KI Wineries entering in the show's wine competition, due to the Aurora Ozone Hotel and the SipnSave Kingscote Cellars coming on board as a major sponsor.
Cellars manager Gavin Bowd was invited to be the judge and together with his assistance had a challenging task with 31 Kangaroo Island wines to judge.
It's a big year for Julie and Jamie Helyar from False Cape Wines as next month they open their cellar door at the Willson River Road winery.
"Jamie and I are excited to have our first win at the Kingscote Show and we also won Wine of the Year at the KI food and wine awards last year," Julie said. "Thanks to the Ozone and the Cellars for their sponsorship."
This was actually the first vintage for False Cape's Riesling that is grown on their property and made by the O'Leary Walker Wines in Clare, whose owners are regular visitors to the Island.
The winning The Captain Cabernet Sauvignon, and all False Cape's other wines, are made at Julie's brother Greg Follet's award-winning Lake Breeze Wines at Langhorne Creek.
The Cab Sav vines were Cape Fear's first planting in 1999 and first vintage in 2003.
"It's grown on a little block down on the Willson River," Julie said. "It's very low yielding but has an intensity of fruit flavour."
False Cape wines being the winner of the prestigious Royal Kingscote Show Champion Wine will now be showcased as feature wine of the month at the Aurora Ozone Hotel's busy "Zone Restaurant ", as well as a focus in our SipnSave Kingscote Cellars .
"Unfortunately there can only be one winner per category. A huge congratulations to False Cape Wines winning both wine categories," Mr Bowd said.
"Finally a huge thank-you to all the local growers/producers who took the time out to enter their lovely wines, I wish we could have given everyone a award, but False Cape was a truly deserving winner.
"And also a huge thank-you to Adrienne and Grant Bates for their tireless task of organising a terrific community event. And finally my esteemed fellow judges David Read and Norman Taylor."
Here is how Gavin saw the judging experience:
On Saturday, November 11, I was invited to judge at the Royal Kingscote Show wine section featuring locally grown/produced wines.
Unsure of how many wines I had to judge, I was very pleasantly surprised to find out there would be 31 wines to power through.
I then invited two of my esteemed colleagues, executive chef David Read and Norman Taylor, to assist me in this very rewarding task .
All wines were blind tasted, with caps removed, so we had no idea who's wines we were drinking, the only information was varietals written on outside of packaging covering the wine.
We took along some Brookvale Union Peach Iced Tea to use as a palate cleanser between varietals, and got stuck into the task at hand.
We started on whites, working our way through the different varietals.
All wines were judged on colour, nose, texture and finish.
All three of us were extremely happy at the quality of wine our local vignerons produced, and I must say it wasn't an easy task trying to pick a winner.
We narrowed the whites down to a final four, and had a more thorough tasting .
The final four were Bay Of Shoals Aninto, Springs Road Chardonnay, False Cape Chardonnay and False Cape Riesling.
With the winner being unanimously the beautiful False Cape Riesling.
Next task was the reds, once again all three of us were amazed at the quality of wines produced on KI.
We narrowed the reds down to a final four, had a more thorough tasting, and once again this wasn't a easy task but we managed to pick as final four: The Islander Malbec, Dudley Shearing Shed Red, Maxwell Shiraz and False Cape Cabernet.
With the winner being False Cape's The Captain Cabernet Sauvignon.
At the end, we awarded the False Cape Riesling as Champion Wine.
We all mentioned that we would have no issues taking a bottle of Kangaroo Island wine along to our next dinner party, barbecue or weekend relax with a lovely wine to share among friends, and encourage everyone to do so, they stacked up very well against wines from mainland Australia.
Currently the Aurora Ozone Hotel"Zone Restaurant" and the Aurora Ozone SipnSave Cellars have a large selection of local wines available by the glass with your meal, or take home to share among friends. - Gavin Bowd, Cellars Manager