The 2020 Newport Seafood and Wine Festival Amateur Wine Competition took place on Sunday, Jan. 26. The Greater Newport Chamber of Commerce (GNCC) received wines from amateur winemakers around Oregon, Washington, Nevada, Oklahoma and New Jersey. Wines were sorted by variety and then arranged into flights to be blindly tasted by a select panel of judges. Scores were given for color, bouquet, taste, finish and overall impression. Of the 53 wines submitted, 12 earned a gold medal, 11 earned silver medals, 14 earned bronze medals and 16 of the submissions were non-medalists.
The most prestigious award of the competition, Best in Show, went to Phil Bard with Bard Cellars from Lake Oswego for his red blend of cabernet sauvignon, cabernet franc and merlot. The judges awarded a score of 18 out of 20, noting the fruity, well-balanced aroma, strong color, mature taste and balanced finish of the wine.
Gold medals were also awarded to the following contestants: Rick Dunlap’s blueberry wine, Robert Hatt’s petit verdot, Paul Sowray’s grenache, Mike Wilskey and Randy Morgan’s white blend, Mike Doherty’s viognier, Bill Brown’s pinot noir, Ari Grey’s pinot noir, Adrian Burling’s marechal foch, Greg Ross’s frontenac noir, Kory McClintock’s French rosé and Russ Gammon’s plum wine.
Silver medals were awarded to: Mike Janisse’s fruit and berry blend, Ken and Barb Stinger’s malbec and zinfandel, Robert Hatt’s pinot noir, Paul Boyechko’s viognier, Rick Nuttall’s merlot, Mike Doherty’s syrah and Greg Ross’s zweigelt rosé.
Bronze medals were awarded to: Pat Lancaster’s apple wine and pinot gris, Mario Pierce’s muscat, Phil Bard’s pinot noir, Ken and Barb Stinger’s merlot, Robert Hatt’s mourvedre, Paul Boyechko’s chardonnay, Rick Nuttall’s “Whiskey Dip,” Mike Doherty’s syrah, Greg Ross’s gruner veltliner and frontenac rosé, Tom York’s plum wine, Otto Broz’s blackberry wine and Rick Blasquez’s pinot noir and cabernet sauvignon.
The Amateur Wine Competition Committee applauds each of the contestants for their commitment and dedication to winemaking. Entered wines will be displayed at the 43rd annual Seafood and Wine Festival in Newport, presented by Chinook Winds Casino Resort on Feb. 20-23. The GNCC would like to remind attendees that Saturday admission is by e-ticket only; there will be no general admission that day. Tickets are available online at www.seafoodandwine.com.