Result are in for the 2019 Finger Lakes International Wine Competition (FLIWC) held in Rochester, New York. With over 3,000 total entries from commercial wineries from around the world, Round Lake Vineyards & Winery was one of only 59 to win a coveted Double Gold Medal with its red blend, The Gander.
In the blind tasting competition, conducted April 13-14 all six wines submitted by Round Lake Vineyards received medals. In addition to The Gander’s double gold, the 2016 Frontenac Gris took a gold. Silver medals went to its 2017 Brianna, 2017 Marquette Reserve and The Drake, a blend of Marquette, Merlot and Zinfandel. A new blend for the winery The Heron, consisting of Petite Pearl, Marquette and Petit Sirah was awarded a bronze medal.
As many as 60 national and international wine professionals are drawn each year for the event, three to four to a panel. Panels blind-taste the wines in “flights.” Each glass from a flight delivered to a judge is identified only by its computer-generated code number. Judges then score each entry on its presence, balance and varietal character.
Round Lake Vineyards & Winery selects wines released in the competition year to represent the winery.
“We can’t send all our wines to the competition, so we have to be selective,” says Scott Ellenbecker who owns the winery with his wife Jenny. “Those chosen for the 2019 competition are some of the most popular at the winery and those sold through retail outlets and to restaurants,” says Ellenbecker.
Ellenbecker explained that an FLIWC medal distinguishes a wine as having exceptional quality and excellence. “We are competing with some of the best and biggest US wineries like E & J Gallo and but also global wineries from Israel, Slovakia and the Czech Republic. Northern climates like Minnesota and New York compare in sunlight, and to an extent climate, to places like Northern France and Germany where we know good wine comes from. Competitions like this, and the ability to purchase on-line, make the world of wine a much more local place for everyone to enjoy.”