The finalists of the 2017 Australian Women in Wine Awards have been announced by the Fabulous Ladies’ Wine Society together with the Australian Women in Wine Awards Advisory Board.

This year sees eight awards on offer, up from six last year, with Jane Thomson, the awards’ founder and chair and the founder of the Fabulous Ladies Wine Society, saying that she was delighted to see that there were a record number of entries received in each category.

“One of the great challenges with these awards is that so often women are reticent to talk themselves up,” Thomson said.

“Too often we hear ‘but I’m just doing my job’ when in fact what they’re doing is extraordinary. This year, the number and quality of entries was incredible and all our judges were really stretched. And we absolutely loved every minute of it.”

Corrina Wright, AWIWA Advisory board member and CEO and winemaker of Oliver’s Taranga added that the awards help to shine a light on Australia’s incredible talent.

“Judging was incredibly difficult,” Wright said. “There is just so much talent across the width and breadth of Australia’s wine regions, so many women really pushing the boundaries and achieving world class results.”

The 2017 Australian Women in Wine Awards finalists are:

Winemaker of the Year – sponsored by WineArk

  • Jo Marsh and Alex Phillips, Billy Button Wines
  • Shavaughn Wells, Saltram Wines
  • Virginia Willcock, Vasse Felix

Viticulturist of the Year – sponsored by Wine Australia

  • Brooke Howell, Yalumba
  • Jennifer Doyle, Jansz
  • Melissa Brown, Gemtree Wines

Owner / Operator of the Year – sponsored by

  • Cassandra MacDonald, eBev
  • Emma Raidis, Raidis Estate
  • Sarah Collingwood, Four Winds Vineyard

Workplace Champion of Change  – sponsored by Winemakers Federation of Australia

  • Carissa Major, Claymore Wines
  • Professor Eileen Scott, Adelaide University
  • Kendall Clements-Virag, Pernod-Ricard

Cellar Door Person of the Year – sponsored by Platinum Bags

  • Janine Carter, Voyager Estate
  • Jasmine Morgan, Caudo Vineyards
  • Sharyn Stagg, Josef Chromy Wines

Researcher of the Year – sponsored by Inkwell Wines

  • Christine Böttcher, CSIRO – Agriculture & Food
  • Dr. Kerry Wilkinson & Dr. Renata Ristic, Adelaide University
  • Patricia Williamson, AWRI

Marketer of the Year – sponsored by Brown Brothers

  • Ebony Tinkler, Usher Tinkler Wines
  • Imogen Hayes, Handpicked Wines
  • Trish Barry, Mastermind Consulting

Woman of Inspiration Award – sponsored by Irvine Wines

  • This is a judges choice award. No entry was required and it will be announced at the awards ceremony on 26 September.

Also presented at the awards ceremony, will be an additional award for an Honorary Australian Woman in Wine for a woman working in the UK wine trade. This award is determined by Wine Australia in conjunction with the AWIWA advisory board and will also be presented on 26 September.

The awards ceremony will take place at a ceremony at Australia House on Tuesday, 26 September and will be part of a Women in Wine tasting event for trade and consumers.

Andy Young

Andy joined Intermedia as Editor of The Shout in 2015, writing news on a daily basis and also writing features for National Liquor News. Now Managing Editor of both The Shout and Bars and Clubs.

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