65 professional wine judges traveled to Cloverdale Citrus Fairgrounds in Sonoma County from January 7th through January 10th. The judges were carefully selected from a myriad of fields that included trade, education, media, retail, and hospitality in order to contribute their expertise in the greatest collaborative judging in the US.
Utilizing an extensive process that divided the varietals into several categories and subcategories, the event gave the panels the chance to rate entries as Bronze, Silver, Gold, and “Double Gold” (equivalent to a unanimous rating by all panel members). Only eight entries were honored with the prestigious Sweepstake Award in the categories of Sparkling, White, Pink, Red, and Dessert/Specialty wines. A special category was also added that included a label contest that is independent of the wine.
And the 2014 Sweepstake Award winners are:
Sparkling Sweepstake (tie)
Domaine Carneros by Taittinger 2009 Brut Carneros Domaine Carneros $32.00
Korbel Champagne Cellars Brut Rosé California $11.00
Baldacci Family Vineyards 2012 Chardonnay Carneros-Napa Sorelle $38.00
Barnard Griffin 2013 Rose of Sangiovese Columbia Valley $12.00
Red Sweepstake (tie)
3 Steves Winery 2011 Zinfandel Cienega Valley $31.00
Calcareous Vineyard 2010 Syrah Paso Robles $40.00
Ferrante Winery 2012 Vidal Blanc Ice Wine Grand River Valley $28.99
Predator 2012 Zinfandel Lodi
Also recognized for extraordinary quality was an extensive list of American award-winning wines, all of which were honored with the Best of Class Awards. Each of the winners were categorized to provide consumers with an easy reference guide to delicious and affordable wines based on insights compiled from industry specialists. A complete listing of winners in each category can be found on www.winejudging.com.
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