For the eighth straight year and 14th time since 1988, Washington’s Chateau Ste. Michelle has been named to the annual Winery of the Year list compiled by Wine & Spirits magazine, one of the industry’s most prestigious publications.
The list, featured in the magazine’s just released 2008 Buying Guide, reflects the 100 wineries from around the world whose products have received the highest scores and highest percentage of recommendations from its critics throughout the past year.
During late 2007 and the first nine months of 2008, Wine & Spirits sampled more than 9,300 wines in search of those that it said are “more than simply delicious. We believe a great wine should be marked by the character of the place where it was grown, and reveal something about the traditions of the people who made it.”
The three Chateau Ste. Michelle wines that were singled out include two – the 2006 Eroica Riesling and the 2004 Col Solare – that each scored 93 on a 100-point scale, and another, the 2005 Ethos Chardonnay, that garnered a 92 rating.
The Eroica also was named to the magazine’s annual 100 Best Wines list, while a fourth winery product – its 2006 Indian Wells Chardonnay – was chosen for a companion list called 100 Best Buys that features only wines “that express their individuality and quality at prices that are more than reasonable.”
By virtue of its latest selection as a Winery of the Year, Chateau Ste. Michelle now stands tied for third place on Wine & Spirits’ Hall of Fame that recognizes those wineries that have demonstrated they are “consistent performers” by earning the tribute multiple times.
The only wineries to have appeared on the list more often are Penfolds of Australia, an 18-time honoree, and Italy’s Antinori, which has been chosen on 15 occasions.
The latter has a long relationship with Chateau Ste. Michelle, dating back to 1995 when it began jointly producing Col Solare with Chateau Ste. Michelle, and continuing today with Ste. Michelle Wines Estates being the exclusive distributor of all Antinori wines in the United States.
Ste. Michelle Wine Estates President and CEO Ted Baseler made reference to the relationship when he said of the Wine & Spirits award, "It is truly an honor to have received this distinction 14 times. Only two wineries in the world have earned more ‘Winery of the Year’ honors and one is our esteemed partner, the Antinori family. It shows that the industry places a great value on our consistent quality and leadership in the wine industry over many years."
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