Waiheke syrah claims laurels

AWARD WINNERS: Passage Rock Vineyard owners Veronika and David Evans-Gander with the Champion Syrah trophy for their Reserve Syrah 2010.
AWARD WINNERS: Passage Rock Vineyard owners Veronika and David Evans-Gander with the Champion Syrah trophy for their Reserve Syrah 2010.

A trip to Wellington for the Air New Zealand Wine Awards was worth it for Passage Rock Vineyard owners Veronika and David Evans-Gander.

The couple was awarded the Champion Syrah trophy for their Reserve Syrah 2010.

The glamorous event saw the Passage Rock vintage take one of only two trophies awarded to wines grown at vineyards in the Auckland region.

The 26th Air New Zealand Wine Awards attracted 1367 entries in 17 classes. Just 19 trophies were awarded at the gala awards dinner at the TSB Arena in Wellington. The Grasshopper Rock Central Otago Earnscleugh Vineyard Pinot Noir 2010 was awarded the Air New Zealand Champion Wine of the Show Trophy.

Mr and Mrs Evans-Gander enjoyed a five course meal created by celebrity chef Peter Gordon while wine enthusiast Jesse Mulligan was the evening's MC.

Mr Evans-Gander says it is the second time Passage Rock Syrah has taken the trophy in nine years.

"We're really stoked, as a company and as a family.

"Thanks from us to all our staff for helping make this trophy possible. It's due to their passion we produce the great wines we do. This proves Waiheke is a really great place to grow syrah.

"This trophy is not just for us, it's for all of us growing syrah on Waiheke."

Waiheke Marketplace