Visit Temecula Valley (VTV), in coordination with Temecula Valley Winegrowers Association (TVWA), today announced the winners of the second annual People’s Choice Blind Tasting. The event took place on Sunday, November 12, 2017, at Leoness Cellars, and featured a walk-around blind tasting, a wine seminar led by Master of Wine Roger Bohmrich and a 6-course awards dinner paired with last year’s winning wines.
Doffo Winery’s 2015 Zinfandel took first place in the competition, after taking second place to Wilson Creek’s Petite Sirah at last year’s inaugural event. The 2017 second place winner was Lorimar Winery’s 2014 Syrah, and third place was taken by Thornton Winery’s 2014 Estate Syrah.
“We are beyond thrilled with receiving 1st Place in the People's Choice competition,” said Damian Doffo, CEO and Winemaker for Doffo Winery. “We work very hard in the vineyard to produce high quality fruit and make exceptional wine. We look forward to sharing with wine with the public in February.”
Over 200 guests tasted 29 wines (6 whites and 23 reds) without knowing any of the wines’ identities, and rated them on a scale of 1-5 during a walk-around wine tasting. The top 12-scoring wines from this portion of the event went on to be poured during a wine seminar led by Master of Wine Roger Bohmrich, where they were again tasted blind and rated on a scale of 1-5, including by Roger himself. Final scores were tallied to determine the top 3 “People’s Choice” wines. Wines could be any variety or a blend, at any price point, as long as they were from the Temecula Valley American Viticultural Area (AVA). Entries ranged from just $24 per bottle to well over $100, and represented a number of grape varieties, from Falanghina to Syrah to Cabernet Franc.
In addition to the walk-around tasting and seminar, the event featured a six-course dinner created by Chef Daragh Matheson from Leoness Cellars, paired with last year’s People’s Choice winners. A VIP reception offered hand-selected pours presented by local winemakers and winery owners. San Diego singer-songwriter Christian Taylor performed throughout the tasting. The evening’s dinner program was emceed by Lindsay Pomeroy, Master of Wine Candidate and owner of the “Wine Smarties” school in San Diego, and a brief keynote was delivered by Bohmrich. Local musician Brian Stodart performed throughout the dinner program.
Sponsors included Gosch Ford, 34° Crisps, Palpula Dips & Sauces, Temecula Lavender Co., Old Town Spice & Tea Merchants, Aall In Limo & Party Bus, Grapeline Wine Tours and American AgCredit. Carter Estate Winery & Resort was the official hotel partner for the event.
The top twelve scoring wines in alphabetical order were as follows:
- Avensole Winery 2014 Malbec, $32.95
- Baily Vineyard & Winery 2014 Malbec, $25.00
- Doffo Winery 2015 Zinfandel, $72.00
- Falkner Winery 2014 Rock Creek Syrah, $49.95
- Fazeli Cellars 2014 Shiraz, $48.00
- Hart Winery 2014 Volcanic Ridge Vineyard Syrah, $60.00
- Leoness Cellars 2014 CS Cabernet Franc-Merlot, $38.00
- Lorimar Winery 2014 Syrah, $48.00
- Miramonte Winery 2014 Estate Syrah, $65.00
- South Coast Winery 2016 Viognier, $25.00
- Thornton Winery 2014 Estate Syrah, $49.00
- Wiens Family Cellars 2015 Sangiovese, $44.00
Most wines can be purchased directly online through each winery’s website. The entire list of wines entered into the competition can be accessed HERE.
ABOUT THE TEMECULA VALLEY AND VISIT TEMECULA VALLEY
With natural gifts of climate and geography, Temecula Valley is widely recognized for its scenic vineyards, award-winning wines, and friendly wineries as Temecula Valley Southern California Wine Country. The destination includes the Temecula Valley A.V.A. (American Viticulture Area) as well as Downtown, Old Town Temecula, and Pechanga Resort & Casino.
Visit Temecula Valley is online at VisitTemeculaValley.com; “Temecula Valley Southern California Wine Country” on Facebook and @Visit_Temecula on Twitter. The Temecula Valley Visitors Center is located in Old Town Temecula on Mercedes Street adjacent the Old Town Parking Garage. For visitor assistance, call 888/363-2852 or 951/491-6085.
ABOUT THE TEMECULA VALLEY WINEGROWERS ASSOCIATION
Temecula Valley is the largest and most commercially successful winegrowing region in the South Coast AVA, the viticultural zone spanning more than 2 million acres from Riverside County to the San Diego border. The Temecula Valley Winegrowers Association has long served as a steward of the Southern California wine community. Comprising 36 wineries and more than 60 winegrowers, the Temecula Valley Winegrowers Association is a nonprofit regional organization dedicated to increasing awareness of the quality wines and wine grapes grown in the Temecula Valley and South Coast Appellations. Established in 1984, the Temecula AVA consists of 33,000 acres, of which approximately 2,500 acres are currently planted to commercial vineyards. Known as Southern California's wine country, the Temecula Valley is located in Riverside County just one hour from San Diego, Orange County and Palm Springs and 90 minutes from Los Angeles.