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Hunter winemaker Andrew Thomas toasts triple treat

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Wine flies when you’re having fun.

And, Pokolbin vintner Andrew Thomas is certainly enjoying life at the moment after being named Winemaker of the Year for a record third time at the recent black-tie Hunter Valley Wine Industry & Legends Awards.

It followed similar accomplishments in 2008 and 2014, highlighting his commitment and consistency in producing some of the region’s best Semillons and Shirazes on an annual basis.

“I am humbled and delighted to receive this award,” he said.

“It gives recognition to all the hard work and attention to detail that we apply to our winemaking every day as well as the successes we have achieved with our wines, particularly over the past 12 months.”

Andrew and Dan Thomas.

Unfortunately, the Thomas Wines owner-winemaker could not attend the function at Rydges Hunter Valley in person, leaving it to sons Dan and Remy to accept the accolade on his behalf.

The former works in the business as assistant winemaker while the latter is a local viticulturalist.

“Making wine is definitely a team effort,” Thomas admitted.

“I’d like to acknowledge Dan, who has been working alongside me for the past three years.

“Plus, all of my staff, who work tirelessly in the pursuit of promoting excellence with the two signature varieties of our region.

“But, I was proud Dan (and Remy) could accept this award in my absence.

“It really is a combined endeavour for which he deserves to be a part of this recognition.”

Andrew Thomas hard at work at Thomas Wines.

Thomas Wines experienced extraordinary triumphs in 2022, winning four trophies and eight gold medals as well as being named Most Successful Exhibitor in the Hunter Valley Boutique Wine Show.

At the same event, it also took home Best Aged Semillon for the 2013 Braemore Cellar Reserve Semillon, Best Mature Red for the 2017 Kiss Shiraz and the Best Open Vintage Shiraz for the 2017 Elenay Shiraz.

Adding to the long list of honours in the 2022 judging year, Thomas went on to snare the trophy for Best Red of Show for the 2021 Elenay Shiraz and Best One Year Old Shiraz also for the 2021 Elenay at the NSW Small Winemakers Show.

He was later acclaimed Best Young Semillon at the Winewise Awards in 2022 for his Thomas Braemore Semillon 2022.

At the highly-regarded Hunter Valley Wine Show, Thomas Synergy Shiraz 2021 collected Best One Year Old Shiraz of Show.

Andrew Thomas.

Thomas, himself, received three golds from as many entries at the 2022 NSW Wine Awards.

Thomas Wines maintained the highest Halliday Wine Companion rating of Red 5 Stars for 2023.

Both signature offerings – Thomas Kiss Shiraz and Thomas Braemore Semillon – were included in the inaugural The Real Review Classification each receiving 2 Merits, too, as well as Thomas Wines being encompassed in the Top Wineries Of Australia, further adding to a successful 2022-2023 judging year and consolidating the Winemaker of the Year win in 2023.

Located on Hermitage Road, on the corner of Mistletoe Lane, Thomas Wines is open seven days a week for tastings.

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