The fifth Wine Australia China Awards was held on 23 October 2017 at the St. Regis, Jing’an in Shanghai. The awards recognised and celebrated the best Wine Australia Trade Specialists who are actively championing the Australian wine category in China. In the first four years of the awards, they grew from a small cocktail event to a gala dinner in 2016.
The awards are part of the Wine Australia Trade Specialist program, an annual marketing activity which invites applicants from a variety of channels - importers, distributors, online and offline retailers and on and off premise - to be part of a recognised group of professionals with an above average or expert knowledge of Australian wine.
2017 marked the fifth year of the awards, which featured a gala dinner attended by some 230 professionals working in the Chinese wine sector, along with key media and influencers. On the night, the following awards were presented to the best of the Trade Specialists:
- Best Importer (sponsored by McWilliam's)
- Winners: Summergate Fine Wines, Kerry Wines and Everwise Wine Limited
- Best Educator and Highly recommended educators (sponsored by Barossa Wine School)
- Winner of Best educator: Sam Chen
- Winners of Highly recommended educators: Ned Zhang, Wendy Ki
- Best Retailer and Highly recommended retailers (sponsored by Dowie Doole)
- Winner of Best retailer: Ole’
- Winners of Highly recommended retailers: JustGrapes and Wine Master
- Best Sommelier/Best Wine List and Highly recommended sommelier (sponsored by Tourism Australia)
- Winner of Best wine list: The House of Roosevelt
- Winner of Best sommelier: Arneis Wu (from L'Atelier de Joël Robuchon Shanghai)
- Winner of Highly recommended sommelier: Feifei Liu (from The Middle House)
- Australian Wine Champion (sponsored by Sydney Royal Wine Show)
To amplify the celebration of Australian wine while the trade specialists were in Shanghai, Wine Australia extended the 2017 award program to include the Australian Wine Fair for media, wine enthusiasts and influencers and masterclasses for wine enthusiasts and influencers.
The inaugural Australian Wine Fair showcased the unique and diverse styles of Australian food and wine, creating an immersive environment where guests could freely explore Australian fine wines.
The four masterclasses were led by Australian wine experts from both Australia and China.
These new initiatives were introduced as part of the Australian Government’s $50 million Export and Regional Wine Support Package (the $50m Package) and featured more than 30 participating wineries from 10 wine regions.
Australian wine regions were invited to participate via expressions of interest from Wine Australia through its marketing newsletters.
Read the media release from the event: Top Chinese wine professionals honoured at China Awards 2017