The top 50 best young wine labels and winemakers on the rise in Australia for 2019 have been revealed in the 13th annual Young Gun of Wine competition.

This’ year top 50 includes 19 winemakers from South Australia, 13 from Victoria, eight from Western Australia, seven from New South Wales/ACT, two from Tasmania and one from Queensland.

This year more than half of the winemakers in the top 50 are new to the list, which founder Rory Kent says highlights the depth of emerging wines and winemakers coming through across Australia.

“Each year, the top 50 list gets harder and harder to decide, which demonstrates the increasing quality and calibre of new wine labels in Australia,” Kent said.

“Added to that, there’s a diversity of people, places and paths to wine, which makes this collection of winemakers so compelling and creatively igniting for the direction of Aussie wine.”

This year’s tasting panel reviewed around 250 wines over two days at King & Godfree, to determine the Top 50. The panel included Nick Stock (Chief Judge, Gourmet Traveller WINE, et al); Mike Bennie (Delicious, et al); Pip Anderson (MONA); Josephine Perry of Dormilona (2016 Young Gun of Wine winner); Rob Mack of Aphelion Wine Co (2018 Young Gun of Wine winner); Penny Grant (Ghanem Group Sommelier – BlackBird Brisbane and Donna Chang); international guest, Leah Rinadli from USA’s leading distributor of natural wines, Jenny & Francois; and Rory Kent (Founder of YGOW).

Stock, who has led the panel since its inception in 2007, said: “I can say hand on heart that these awards have built an incredible network of support and leadership around the new and emerging winemaking scene in Australia. Whether directly or through simple observation, the winemakers that have been recognised in recent years mentor and inspire a talented pool of others in the space.

“The polish and conviction seen across the entries this year bode well for the future of Australian winemaking.”

The Top 50 list via state:


  • Tarrant Hansen from Spider Bill Wines, Adelaide Hills
  • Ben Cook from Cooke Brothers Wines, Adelaide Hills
  • Adam Lampit from Lambrook Wines, Adelaide Hills
  • James Hamilton from Golden Child Wines, Adelaide Hills
  • Jono Hersey from Hersey Vineyard, Adelaide Hills
  • Sacha La Forgia from Adelaide Hills Distillery, Adelaide Hills
  • Tom Northcott from Howard Vineyard, Adelaide Hills
  • Turon White from Turon Wines, Adelaide Hills
  • Damon Koerner from Koerner Wine, Clare Valley
  • Michael John Corbett from Sanglier Wines, Clare Valley
  • Josh Pfeiffer from Whistler, Barossa Valley
  • Steven Baraglia from Naked Run Wines, Barossa Valley / Clare Valley
  • Daniel Redman from Redman Wines, Coonawarra
  • Vanessa Altmann from Switch Organic Wine, Eden Valley / McLaren Vale
  • Luke Growden from Year Wines, McLaren Vale
  • Sam Dunlevy from Berg Herring Wines, McLaren Vale
  • Duncan Lloyd and Peter Lloyd from Dune, McLaren Vale
  • Alice Davidson from Norfolk Rise / Aunt Alice, Robe / Mount Benson
  • Peta Baverstock from Cuvée Co. Wines, Limestone Coast


  • Alister Timms from Shadowfax Winery, Macedon Ranges
  • Ben Ranken from Wilimee, Macedon Ranges
  • Liam O’Brien and Matt Brooke from Athletes of Wine, Macedon Ranges
  • James Sexton from Main Ridge Estate, Mornington Peninsula
  • Leighton Joy from Pyren Vineyard, Pyrenees
  • Dave Fletcher from Fletcher Wines, Pyrenese (Vic) / Barbaresco (Italy)
  • Pat Underwood from Little Reddie, Heathcote
  • Simon Killeen from Simao & Co Wines, Rutherglen / North East Victoria
  • Alastair Reed and Sam Cook from Konpira Maru, King Valley (Vic) / South Burnett (Qld)
  • Matt Froude, Municipal, Strathbogie Ranges
  • Callie Jemmeson and Nina Stocker from Pacha Mama, Victoria
  • Jayden Ong from Jayden Ong/One Block, Yarra Valley
  • Shaun Crinion from Dappled Wines, Yarra Valley


  • Genevieve and Rob Mann from Corymbia, Swan Valley
  • Alexi Christidis from Chalari Wines, Frankland River / Perth Hills
  • Rhys Parker and Paul Hoffman from Vallée du Venom, Margaret River / Swan Valley
  • Remi Guise from tripe.Iscariot, Margaret River
  • Julian Langworthy and John Fogarty from Goon Tycoons, Margaret River / Frankland River
  • Liv Maiorana and Mijan Patterson from South by South West, Margaret River
  • Kim Tyrer from Galafrey Wines, Mount Barker
  • Matt Eastwell & Danni Paviour-Smith from Freehand, Great Southern


  • Campbell Meeks from Boutique Wines by CSU, Canberra District
  • Chris Carpenter from Lark Hill Winery, Canberra District
  • Angus Vinden from Vinden Estate / The Vinden Headcase, Hunter Valley
  • Daniel Payne from Dirt Candy Wine, Hunter Valley
  • Shannon Burgess-Moore from Grandis / De Iuliis Wines, Hunter Valley
  • Will Rikard-Bell from Rikard Wines, Orange
  • Rob Paulazzo from R.Paulazzo, Riverina


  • Greer Carland from Quiet Mutiny, Tasmania
  • Jonathan Hughes from Mewstone Wines, Tasmania


  • Andrew Scott from La Petite Mort, Granite Belt

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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