Alena Kamper from Sacred Hill in Hawke’s Bay has been named 2023 Tonnellerie de Mercurey North Island Young Winemaker of the Year.
The 22-year-old performed strongly across the wide range of tasks at the competition, held at Indevin’s Gimblett Gravels winery on 28 September, which included blending, wine market knowledge, cellar skills, wine tasting and an interview.
Casey Mackintosh from Indevin was second and Frances Robertson-Best from Te Mata came third.
The other contestants were Charlotte Ross, Craggy Range; Chresten Bjarnesen, Mission Estate; Leigh O’Connor, Sileni and Thalia Osborne, Ash Ridge Wines.
The awards dinner was held at Brookfields Winery, only a few days after its restaurant re-opened following months of recovery from Cyclone Gabrielle.
Kampera won $1000 cash, premium wines, a Dale Carnegie leadership course and an educational trip sponsored by Fruitfed Supplies, which will take place early next year.
She will now represent the North Island in the National Final on October 31 at The Bone Line in Waipara, North Canterbury.