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The Winning Wines from the San Francisco International Wine Competition

The San Francisco International Wine Competition was held at San Francisco's Hotel Nikko, June 17th, 18th and 19th. The winning wines were announced today.

All judging was done blind. All wines were submitted for judging by the wineries. Any commercial wine was eligible to enter.


4,184 wines tasted

1,200 wineries represented (including 392 new winery participants)
20 U.S. states were represented
29 countries had entries
48 judges (all wine industry professionals)
153 Double Gold awards
290 Gold medals
1,102 Silver medals
1,549 Bronze medals

"Best in Show" awards

Best in Show Sparkling: Raza 2011 Torrontes, Famatina Valley, $10
Best in Show Dry White Wine: Turk 2009 Gruner Veltliner, Kremstal, $20
Best in Show Red Wine: Lynmar Estate Winery 2009 Pinot Noir, Quail Hill Vineyard, Russian River Valley, $60
Best in Show Sweet White Wine: V. Sattui Winery 2009 Late Harvest Riesling, Napa Valley, $31
Best in Show Fortified Wine: Pocas Junior 1976 Colheita Port, Douro Valley, $80

Special Awards

"Portfolio of the Year"
Constellation Wines U.S. was recognized for excellence across a spectrum of brands.

Andre Tchelistcheff "Winemaker of the Year" award
Winemaker Bob Iantosca, Gloria Ferrer Winery, Sonoma, California

The Tasting Panel Magazine "Winery of the Year" award
The Hogue Cellars of Prosser, Washington.

"Best of Varietal" (22 different categories)

Best Dry Sparkling: Gruet Winery NV Extra Dry, Methode Champenoise, Rio Grande Valley, $14 
Best Sparkling Rose: Castello Banfi 2010 Brachetto di Acqui, Rosa Regale, DOCG, Piedmont, $23
Best Sauvignon Blanc: Vinarstvi Libal 2010 Sauvignon Blanc, Moravia, $12
Best Chardonnay: Fritz Winery 2009 Chardonnay, Russian River Valley, $25
Best Pinot Gris: Quails' Gate Estate Winery 2010 Pinot Gris, Okanagan Valley, $23
Best Torrontes: Alta Vista 2010 Classic Torrontes, Mendoza, $11
Best Other White: Tabor Hill Winery 2010 Dry Traminette, Lake Michigan Shore, $14
Best Riesling: The Hogue Cellars 2009 Riesling, Columbia Valley, $11
Best Muscat: Yellow Tail 2011 Moscato, South Eastern, $8
Best Icewine: Jackson-Triggs Okanagan Estates 2009 Riesling Ice Wine, Gold Series, Okanagan Valley, $62
Best Madeira: Justino 1998 Colheita Madeira, Estreito de Camara de Lobos, $20
Best Syrah / Shiraz: Zonte's Footstep 2009 Shiraz, Lake Doctor Vineyard, Langhorne Creek, $16
Best Cabernet Sauvignon: Hughes Wellman 2007 Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa Valley, $50
Best Merlot: Cakebread Cellars 2008 Merlot, Napa Valley, $54
Best Malbec: Martin Ranch Winery 2009 Malbec, Dos Ninas Vineyards, Santa Clara Valley, $29
Best Premium Bordeaux Blend: Grey Wolf Cellars 2008 Premium Bordeaux Blend, Booker Vineyard, Lineage, Paso Robles, $36
Best Barbera: Helwig Vineyards 2009 Barbera, Shenandoah Valley, $25
Best Grenache: Almquist Family Vintners 2008 Grenache, Northridge Vineyard, Wahluke Slope, $25
Best Tempranillo: Hearst Ranch Winery 2009 Tempranillo "Chileano", Paso Robles, $30
Best Zinfandel: Sobon Estate 2008 Zinfandel, Lubenko Vineyard, Fiddletown, $22
Best Rhone Blend: Troublemaker NV Blend 2, Paso Robles, $18
Best Sake: Momokawa Pearl Junmai Ginjo Nigori Genshu Sake, Oregon, $12  

"Best of Nation" awards

Alta Vista, Argentina, importer Buena Cepa Wines
Taylors /  Wakefield  Wines, Australia, importer American Wine Distributors
Turk, Austria, importer Niche Import Co.
Panizzon, Brazil; Katarzyna Estate, Bulgaria, importer Imperial Brands
Inniskillin, Canada, importer Constellation Wines U.S.
Hacienda Araucano, Chile, importer Winesellers, Ltd.
Ilocki Podrumi, Croatia
Vinarstvi Libal, Czech Republic
Perrier-Jouet Champagne, France, importer Pernod Ricard USA
Castello Banfi, Italy, importer Banfi Vintners
Okunomatsu, Japan, importer Pacific International Liquor
Santo Tomas, Mexico, importer Torrey Wine
Saint Clair Family Estate, New Zealand
Pocas Junior, Portugal, importer HGC Imports;
Waka Waka, South Africa;
Torre de Gazate, Spain
Terra, Turkey

San Francisco International Wine Competition Judges

Anthony Dias Blue • President, Blue Lifestyle; Editor-in-Chief, The Tasting Panel
, Executive Director of the SF Int'l Wine and SF World Spirits Competitions, L.A.
Jeff Anderson • Wine Director, Gary Danko Restaurant, San Francisco
Brian Baker • VP Sales & Marketing, Chateau Montelena, Sonoma
Steve Bell • Northern California Regional Manager, Charles Krug Winery, San Francisco
Gary Blackwell • Retailer / Wine Buyer, Blackwell's Wines & Spirits, San Francisco
William Bloxsom-Carter • Executive Chef, Food & Beverage Director, Playboy Mansion West, L.A.
Mark Bowery • Wine & Spirits Consultant, Mark Bowery Consulting, Mendocino
Ronald Brown • Editor & Publisher, The Japan Wine Challenge Magazine, Tokyo
Katie Ballou Calhoun • President, Calhoun & Company Communications, San Francisco
Rebecca Chapa • Wine Consultant & Educator, Tannin Management, San Francisco
Kimberly Charles • Owner, Charles Communications Associates, San Francisco
Scott Clemens • Editor/Publisher,, Moss Beach
Katherine Cole • Wine Columnist, The Oregonian + Mix, Portland
Jerry Cooper • Retailer / Wine & Spirits Buyer, Swirl on Castro, San Francisco
Janet Dyer • Partner, JAM Wines, San Francisco
Ziggy Eschliman • Wine Gal, Countess of Cocktails, Wine Country Radio, Santa Rosa
Michael Feil • GM / Wine & Spirits Buyer, Westchester Country Club, New York
Scott Greenberg • Wine Columnist, Radio Reporter, The Vine Guy, Washington, D.C.
Michael Hantman • Wine Consultant, President, Wine Phone, Healdsburg
Jim Harré • Wine Consultant & International Wine Judge, New Zealand
Steven Izzo • Wine and Beverage Director, Waterbar, San Francisco
Mendel Kohn • Sales, Vinifera Wine Marketing, San Francisco
Ellen Landis • Sommelier, Wine Writer, Consultant, Half Moon Bay
Ann Littlefield • International Marketing & Sales, Littlefield Wine & Spirits Marketing, Napa
Charles F. Mara • President, The Mara Wine Group, New York
Drake McCarthy • Western Regional Manager, Europvin USA, Oakland
Tim McDonald • President, Wine Spoken Here, Napa
Jim McMahon • Wine Writer, Author, & Consultant, Australia
Bill McNabb • Wine Editor, Piedmont Post, Piedmont
Nick Ponomareff • Wine Writer, California Grapevine, California
Kate Radburnd • Wine Consultant, New Zealand Air, New Zealand
Jane Rate • Sommelier, Genoa Restaurant, Portland
Robert Silverstein • Wine Director, Venice Beach Wines, L.A.
Ronald Siragusa • Wine Director, Kuleto's Italian Restaurant & Bar Norcini, San Francisco
George Skorka • Wine Consultant, Skorka Wine Consulting, Los Angeles
Jeffery K. Stivers • General Manager, Wine & Spirits Director, Xandros Restaurant, L.A.
James Trezise • President, New York Wine & Grape Foundation, New York
Tim Teichgraeber • Freelance Wine Writer, San Francisco
Dr. Valery Uhl • Director & Chief Judge, North of the Gate Wine Competition, Petaluma
Kevin M. Vogt, MS • Wine & Spirits Director, Emeril's, Las Vegas
Gregory S. Walter • Editor & Publisher,, Sonoma
Ronald Washam • Sommelier, Les Mars Hotel, Sonoma
Gerald Weisl • Retailer & Wine Buyer, Weimax Wines & Spirits, Burlingame
Rosina Tinari Wilson • E-Source for Wine, Food, & Fun, San Rafael
Deborah Parker Wong • Editor Northern California, Tasting Panel Magazine, San Francisco
Wilfred Wong • Cellarmaster, Beverages & More !, California
Debbie Zachareas • Retailer / Wine Director, Ferry Plaza Wine Merchant, San Francisco

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