A Proud Moment in Mission Hill Family Estate's History
West Kelowna, British Columbia (July 30th, 2014) - This year marks the 20th anniversary of winning the coveted Avery Trophy for 'Best Chardonnay in the World' at the International Wine and Spirit Competition (IWSC) in the United Kingdom. The IWSC is one of the most prestigious wine competitions in the world and the fact that a small family-owned winery from what at the time was a still emerging wine region in Canada won top honours was, and remains, an unprecedented achievement in the wine world.
Back in 1994, renowned wine critic Anthony Gismondi captured the
sentiment of the entire wine industry when he published an article
describing the victory for Mission Hill as…
"A remarkable achievement by any standard that will go down as Herculean in British Columbia wine history."
Mission Hill's longstanding Chief Winemaker John Simes shared a similar view when he was presented with the Avery Trophy."This award means more to us than there are words to describe it! It has given us credibility in the wine industry, confidence and vindication of our efforts".
This victory was instrumental in first placing British Columbia's Okanagan Valley on the world wine map. It also provided the confidence for Proprietor Anthony von Mandl to make the investments required to produce world class wines that could stand alongside the best in the world. Significant investments in vineyards, precision viticulture and the grandest statement of all, a six-year transformation of the winery itself to create a landmark that will stand the test of time and delight visitors from around the world. All of these great achievements were direct outcomes of the Avery Trophy win.
The winning Chardonnay was blended using grapes from vineyards that we still source from today and using the same heritage clone, proving our chardonnay program can and will stand the test of time! A few words to describe it; continuously excellent, working towards an exceptional campaign to fine-tune viticulture for a single wine, from each single vineyard. Focus on low yields, strict selection, and multiple passes, knowing where the best grapes are and night picking to ensure maximum flavour retention are just a handful of the practices John Simes and his team follow to support our outstanding Chardonnay program!
This celebration represents a profound achievement for the Mission Hill winemaking and vineyard teams led by John Simes. Mission Hill Family Estate will always be "Family Owned. Family Farmed. Family Pride"!