Ambassador prize amazing says Maddy

Maddy Hopgood (right) during her travels as part of the Young Ambassador prize with fiance, Michael Slade.

Lyndoch’s Maddy Hopgood has settled back into Barossa life after spending a month overseas organised as part of her prize for being crowned the 2019 Barossa Young Ambassador.

The 24 year old is back into work at Peter Lehmann Wines and will soon turn her focus to next year’s Barossa Vintage Festival and mentoring the next entrants in the Barossa Young Ambassador programme.

Together with fiance, Michael Slade, the duo fulfilled the dream of a Europe trip in winter, where they took in 13 countries, starting in London, making their way through Italy, Austria, Hungry, Prague and finishing in the Netherlands.

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Taking in all the sights, history, food and culture that each destination has, Maddy will cherish the opportunity she was given.

“Overall, it was the most amazing trip… I had never been overseas before,” said Maddy.

“But winning this gave me the push to go and it was something I always wanted to do and never planned.”

Maddy said the culture and varying differences between the countries were an amazing experience and adds her enjoyment to play in the snow and be in the cold.

“I think we are doing a good job with the cellar doors and wineries here,” said Maddy.

“We went on a food tour, which is something that would be a good idea to have here.

“A local in Berlin took us to where the locals eat, and not the tourists, and he shared the history and that was really cool and something new they are trialling.”

With more than 5,000 photos capturing her experience, Maddy said the travel opportunity has encouraged her to undertake more travel.

“I would like to go to other places and back to those places we visited too and explore more,” said Maddy.

“I just had the best time… it was a lot of fun and we also learnt a lot about the history there which put into perspective how young we are in Australia.”

She said the chance to taste German cake, an unknown for many on the trip with Maddy, showed how much better it is in the Barossa.

Maddy is looking forward to coming months when the committee come together to start working on next year’s Barossa Vintage Festival.

Maddy will play an important role in the Young Ambassador programme.

“I gained a lot of knowledge about things in the Barossa that I didn’t know and I made a lot of connections and had the chance to meet with so many people in the Barossa,” said Maddy.

“There were a lot of great experiences that I wouldn’t have had without the programme.

“It was an amazing prize and it was good to go out and see the world, especially for someone that hasn’t done that before.”

But before she settles into programmes for the 2021 Barossa Vintage Fesitval, Maddy is focused on her May wedding.