A show-stopping awards ceremony, complete with guests walking the hot-pink carpet on arrival and filling their glasses from themed wine bars poured by the woman who produced that wine, was how the 2019 Australian Women in Wine Awards (AWIWA) was celebrated in New York overnight.
WBM – Australia’s Wine Business Magazine is a sponsor of the awards.
The event was attended by nearly 40 Australian female wine producers, and the invitation-only guest list also included an additional 100+ trade, media and dignitaries.
Eight out of the nine winners were in the room to receive their award in person. The cheers and congratulations weren’t contained to just one room, however, because the whole ceremony was live-streamed across the world via the Australian Women in Wine Facebook page.
The live stream is part of an ongoing commitment by the AWIWA to engage the entire Australian wine community in these awards.
The event, which was co-hosted by New York-based sommelier and women in wine advocate, Marika Vida and the AWIWA founder and chair, Jane Thomson, was conducted in partnership with Wine Australia and was the launch piece for Wine Australia’s Far From Ordinary campaign.
The month-long campaign is the largest Australian wine promotion ever held in the USA.
“Wine Australia is delighted to support the Australian Women in Wine Awards that celebrate the achievements of many talented women from the Australian grape and wine community and it was wonderful to partner with the event in New York,” Wine Australia CEO Andreas Clark said.
“We believe that our diverse wine community is one of our greatest strengths that help make our wine Far From Ordinary, and we are delighted to sponsor the Honorary Australian Woman in Wine USA and the Viticulturist of the Year awards.”
Jane Thomson said that the decision to kick off the whole USA campaign with the AWIWA was a clear sign that “Aussie #winechicks are integral” to the Australian wine story, and that celebrating their contribution has benefits to the entire wine community and beyond.
“Australian wine history is now boldly being made with her-story front and centre,” she said.
The 2019 AWIWA winners
Winemaker of the Year – sponsored by Tonnellerie Saint Martin
Vanya Cullen, Cullen Wines
Researcher/Innovator of the Year – sponsored by Angove Family Winemakers
Inca Lee, Vinehealth Australia
Champion of Diversity & Equality – sponsored by Australian Grape and Wine
John Davis, Pepper Tree Wines
Marketer of the Year – sponsored by denomination
Imogen Hayes, Handpicked Wines
Cellar Door Person of the Year – sponsored by Purple Giraffe
Ulrika Larsson, Clairault Streicker
Viticulturist of the Year – sponsored by Wine Australia
Sheridan Alm, Starrs Reach Vineyard
Owner / Operator of the Year – sponsored by WineWorks Australia
Sarah McDougall, Lake George Winery
Woman of Inspiration Award – sponsored by Irvine Wines
Angie Bradbury, Dig&Fish
Honorary Australian Women in Wine Award USA – co-sponsored by Wine Australia & the Victoria State Government.
Photo caption: From left: Sarah McDougall, Ulrika Larsson, Christina Pickard, Vanya Cullen, Jane Thomson, John Davis, Angie Bradbury, Imogen Hayes and Sheridan Alm.