The Wine Australia China Awards last night honoured wine trade professionals who have made outstanding contributions to promoting and raising awareness of Australian wine in China.
The 6th annual Awards recognised importers, distributors, sommeliers, educators and media who have contributed to Australia’s powerful presence in the world’s fastest-growing wine market.
This year’s ‘Australian Wine Made Our Way’ branded event was bigger and bolder than ever with the support of the Australian Government’s $50 million Export and Regional Wine Support Package (the $50m Package).
The red-carpet gala dinner attracted more than 200 guests, including a record 60+ Chinese and international media who gathered at the Bvlgari Hotel in Shanghai for a celebration of Australian wine.
Wine Australia Chief Executive Officer Andreas Clark said, ‘China is our number one wine export market by value and these awards reflect our appreciation and gratitude to the trade for helping us achieve such widespread recognition and respect for Australian wine.
‘This strong growth is the result of a lot of hard work by Australia’s wine exporters and is a testament to the support of trade professionals, educators and media championing Australian wine in China’, he said.
Wine Australia’s Regional General Manager North Asia David Lucas said, ‘We are celebrating really impressive growth for Australian wine in China with exports increasing by 24 per cent, to the value of AU$1.06 billion.
‘I would like to take this opportunity to sincerely thank our friends and colleagues in the trade for their amazing support in helping us get where we are today. Thanks to this support, the future of Australian wine is looking very bright in China’, he said.
Eight coveted honours were awarded at the gala ceremony, held at the Bvlgari Hotel in Shanghai. The awards included:
- Best Australian Wine List (sponsored by KPMG Sydney Royal Wine Show): Jing An Shangri-La West Shanghai
- Best Australian Wine Promotional Campaign – on premise: Kerry Wines
- Best Australian Wine Promotional Campaign – online stores: ASC Fine Wines
- Best Australian Wine Educator (sponsored by Barossa Wine School): Dorian Tang
- Best Feature Story on Australian Wine – consumer media: CEO WORLD
- Best Feature Story on Australian Wine – trade media: Wine Missionary by Terry Xu
- Online Wine Communicator of the Year (sponsored by McLaren Vale Grape Wine and Tourism Association): Karla Wang (Lady Penguin)
- Online Food and Wine Communicator of the Year (sponsored by Tourism Australia): Eva Xie.
Awards sponsor Evan Hughes, Royal Agricultural Society of NSW Councillor from KPMG Sydney Royal Wine Show said, ‘We have sponsored the Wine Australia China Awards for three years and have witnessed the influence of the Awards growing even bigger as the growth and demand for Australian wine in the market continues to grow stronger.’
Andrew Hogg, Regional General Manager, North Asia from Tourism Australia, said, ‘Australia not only offers breathtaking landscapes, unique wildlife and pristine coastlines, but also authentic, diverse and high-quality wines. More and more Chinese visitors go to wine regions across the country to experience the wonderful food and wine culture of Australia, and the future is promising. With the support of $50m Package, we are working closely with Wine Australia to boost the Australian wine tourism in the China market.’
Winner of the ‘Best Australian Wine Educator’ Dorian Tang said, ‘…what excites me about Australian wine is the combination of traditional winemaking, innovative techniques and passionate winemakers.’
Awards judge and Master Sommelier Lu Yang, Founder of Grapea & Co said, ‘On the consumer level, numbers don’t lie; both volume and value have been increasing tremendously in China…and the expansion of the China Awards each year reflects this growth. Without this growth, the expansion of this event from a small cocktail party to a gala dinner would not have been possible.’
The Wine Australia China Awards were held on the eve of the ProWine China wine fair in Shanghai, one of China’s most important wine expos, where the Australian wine sector will showcase its largest-ever pavilion at Shanghai New International Expo Centre.
The China Awards and Wine Australia’s presence at ProWine are supported by the Australian Government’s $50m Package, which aims to showcase the nation’s wine tourism and accelerate demand for Australia’s wine exports.
Images from the event are available here.