Finally, we have the results of the 2013 Competition of International Wines of Lyon, France. What better place to hold an International competition than in Lyon, known as the culinary capital of France. The competition held on April 6, last weekend, was full of surprises.Wines came from not only the traditional wine making countries such as Austria, Germany, Portugal, Italy, Spain and the host country, France; but also, there were other world wine making countries involved including wines from Australia, Brazil, Canada, Croatia, the Czech Republic, South Africa, England, and USA. With so many countries being represented, the competition in Lyon proved to be very exciting and interesting this year.
The wines representing the USA this year were only a handful to brave the other side of the Atlantic and all of them coming from Texas Hill Country. In order to give identity to the Texas style of wines, the emphasis was put on white wines coming from the Rhone using the Viognier grape. The handful of Texas wineries that participated in the competition were Becker Vineyards, Pedernales Cellars, Brennan Vineyards and Flat Creek Estate. Of seven Texas wines entered in the competition, there were three (one of each, Bronze, Silver and Grand Gold, which is the equivalent to a double gold) that were awarded medals.
The 2013 Bronze medal was awarded to Flat Creek Estate 2012 Viognier. Flat Creek Estate is owned by the energetic and bubbly Madelyn, and her straight shooting husband, Rick Naber. Their 80 acres Estate is located off the beaten path in the city of Marble Falls in the Hill Country. But once you go there, you will never want to leave. Their winemaker is Tim Drake.
The 2013 Silver medal was awarded to Becker Vineyards 2012 Viognier. A 46 acres Estate located in Stonewall, Texas, is owned by the tall and elegant Bunny Becker and her distinguished husband, Dr. Richard Becker. Both are passionate gardeners and wine and food lovers. Their Estate houses a little old log cabin, a large Conference room and Tasting room which is always buzzing with activities. Their winemaker is Jonathan Leahy.
The 2013 Grand Gold was awarded to Pedernales Cellars 2012 Viognier. Also
located in Stonewall, this 17 acres Texas winery was founded in the early 1990’s by Jeanine and Larry Kuhlken. By planting Mediterranean grape varieties, they were a part of the Texas wine pioneers that wanted to give Texas wines another identity other than the wines made from Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, chardonnay, etc. Their children, Julie and David, and their spouses continued the path created by their parents and are dedicated to making world class wines using sustainable practices.
So there you have it. Congratulations to the medal winners and next year let’s get more Texas wineries involved!
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