Press Releases

Judgment of Louisville: Kentucky wines face perceptive palates in new competition


For Immediate Release
Wednesday, June 5, 2013
For more information contact:
Holly Harris VonLuehrte
(502) 573-0450

FRANKFORT, Ky. – Kentucky wineries will hold up their best wines to the scrutiny of nationally recognized judges in the inaugural Kentucky Commonwealth Commercial Wine Competition July 27 in Louisville.

“Kentucky wines have improved significantly in recent years,” Agriculture Commissioner James Comer said. “We want to have a competition that honors the quality of the best Kentucky wines and educates consumers as well as wineries about the characteristics of great wines. A first-class competition with highly regarded judges will help Kentucky achieve a national reputation as a producer of fine wines.”

The competition is open to wines from licensed Kentucky small-farm wineries. The judges will taste the wines blindly and award gold, silver, and bronze medals based on the merits of the wines.

Commissioner’s Cup awards will honor the “best of the best” among the gold medal winners. Commissioner’s Cup awards will be given in Dry Red, Dry White, and Sweet/Dessert Style/Fruit Wine for eligible wines with a minimum of 100 cases available for sale to the public and a Boutique Wines category for eligible wines with fewer than 100 cases available. A wine must be produced from a minimum of 75 percent Kentucky fruit to be eligible for the Commissioner’s Cup.

The judges will come from Kentucky and more than a half-dozen other states. They have judged wine competitions throughout the nation and have served as wine wholesalers, retailers, and educators. One judge once hosted a wine and food show on PBS. The judges were recruited by Tom Cottrell, Extension enologist in the University of Kentucky College of Agriculture and himself a nationally respected judge.

Wineries may register wines for the competition at Deadline to register is July 10.