HVWGA 2008 AWARDS DINNER AT THE CIA IN POUGHKIPSIE
Last night were the HVWGA 2008 Awards Dinner. The bash was held at the Culinary Institute of America, under cloudy skies, but fair weather. The finger foods and dinner were exceptional - and so were the wines. Mike Migliore, John Huddleson, Debbie Gioquindo, and many others deserve more and more praise for conducting this competition and event, which both highlights amateur and professional winemakers.
The Hudson Valley version of goodfellas. Here's a picture of Doug Glorie (Glorie Winery), John Graziano (Millbrook), Richard Eldridge(Brimstone Winery), and Mark Stopkie (Adair Vineyards). These are really good folks. John's Cabernet Franc ran away with the Cornell Cup, which is for the best wine in the Hudson Valley. Congrats to John and the rest of the folks at Millbrook!
This is Debbie Gioquindo who is otherwise known as The Wine Goddess. You should go to her blog if you are interested in Hudson Valley wines and tours. She's a great lady, and someone who is making a difference in the wine community in the Valley. Go to: http://hvwinegoddess.blogspot.com/ You can also see what she's up to at: www.exclusivewinevacations.com
The elegant dinning room was a superb setting for the dinner. We feasted on a mixed appetizer featuring grilled beef, chicken, salmon, and shrimp. We also dined on roasted lamb (which went beautifully with the Benmarl Baco Noir) and steak (which was perfect for the Millbrook Cabernet Franc). The CIA is a great place to host such an event, and highlights the culinary value of the valley.
Clinton Vineyards was ably represented by Ben Feder and his lovely wife Phyllis, the self described "child bride." Ben is the senior winemaker of the valley, and at 85 he still talked a great game and had the crowd chuckling. Clinton Vineyards will be celebrating it's 30th Anniversary this year. Congrats to them!
The folks from Brookview Station took home a gold for their wonderful apple wine. Great fun! This is only a small part of their large contingent. Congrats!
Tony Trigo of Claremont Vineyards and and his better half also attended.
Other people, among many, included the rounded applauded Steve Casscels; Kristop Brown, who won a chestful of medals; and the funloving and likeable owner of Bashakill.
This event really showed how far the Hudson Valley has come. More than ever before the wines are showing through lovely. The Benmarl Seyval Blanc and the Whitecliff Awosting White were excellent, dry, crisp whites, and the Benmarl and Millbrook reds showed that the valley is producing solid reds which can compete in the open marketplace.
It was a great evening, and the fun of it was seeing so many new faces from the smaller, start-up wineries like Bashakill and others that are growing in number. The Hudson Valley's reputation as a culinary and wine destination is growing, and a new generation of winemakers is ascending the stage. The view from here is mostly good...and that's good news for wine drinkers of all descriptions.