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Our young guns in wine

Our young guns in wine

Seven Barossa winemakers have been named as a Young Gun of Wine, making the top 50 at a ceremony in Melbourne on Wednesday night.

Alex Head, Head Wines; Brett Grocke, Eperosa; John Hughes, Rieslingfreak; Josh Pfeiffer, Whistler Wines; Michael Papps, Yelland & Papps; Steven Crawford, Frederick Stevenson/Giovanni Armani Giorgio and Vanessa Altmann, Switch Organic Wine have been acknowledged as best young winemakers from a pool of 200 candidates.

The Young Gun of Wine, for the past 11 years, has showcased the best up and coming winemakers in Australia.

Rieslingfreak’s John Hughes and Vanessa Altmann, Switch Organic Wine were last night named in the top 12 and will now have their two wines put in a public tasting before an announcement is made next month.

Tanunda based, John entered rieslings from Eden Valley and Clare in his first time in the awards.

 “Being in the top 50 of that is quite an honour,” said John.

“It was a good feeling, being up there on stage and receiving acknowledgement for the Rieslingfreak wines by the wine industry in general.”

He added what he loves about the Barossa is the young winemakers and felt the Young Gun of Wine is not only good for the individual but also the Barossa.

Vanessa Altman, who was named a finalist in 2013, said it’s really exciting to be included among so many talented winemakers.

“They are making wines which bring new momentum and a fresh taste to what we drink in Australia and the style of wine we export around the world,” said Vanessa.

For Josh Pfeiffer, who made the top 20 last year, being named in the top 50 is great brand exposure, particularly for many who are smaller producers.

Entering the 2016 Dry As a Bone and the 2016 Stacks On GSM, Josh said each year he is getting further and further towards the style of wine he is ultimately aiming for.

“It is great to see what consumers think is quite a traditional region, showcase such a diverse range of wine styles,” said Josh.

“There’s a bunch of good people sourcing fruit from the Barossa and doing fun things with it. It is great to see the Barossa getting recognised for having progressive, younger, smaller producers doing exciting things.”

For the full story see this week’s edition of The Leader.