This week, 25 judges will taste and nearly 800 New York-made wines at the Mohonk Mountain House in New Paltz as part of the New York Wine & Food Classic. The Classic is New York’s largest wine competition, and even if I’ve been a bit critical of it in the past, it is an important competition that focuses solely on New York wines.

This year’s judging panel consists of 7 tasters from California, 11 from New York and 7 from the rest of the U.S.

The California contingent includes Dan Berger, wine journalist; Rene Chazottes, wine director of the Pacific Club; Mike Dunne, food and wine writer for the Sacramento Bee; Traci Dutton, Director of Education at the Culinary Institute of America-Greystone in the NapaValley; Ziggy Eschliman of Wine Country Radio; Ann Littlefield, Direct Wine Marketing Brand Champion in Napa; and Dr. Bob Small, Director of the Los Angeles International Wine & Spirits Competition. 

The New York tasters are Molly Battenhouse, DWS, Wine Director & Educator at the International Wine Center; Shannon Brock, Wine Coordinator at the New York Wine & Culinary Center (and friend of LENNDEOVURS); Rory Callahan, President of Wine & Food Associates; Jim Clarke, Wine Writer and Director of Wine at MEGU restaurant; Lorraine Hems, CS, CWE, Lecturer of Wine Studies, Rochester Institute of Technology; Fred LeBrun, Columnist at the Albany Times-Union; Bill Mahoney, Wine Manager, Premium Wine & Spirits in Buffalo; Bert Miller, Food & Beverage Director of the Long Island Marriott; Jerry Shriver, Writer, USA Today; Eric White, Wine Consultant & Store Manager at The Winery in New York City; and Kevin Zraly, Wine Educator & Author.

Those from other states include Hudson Cattell, co-publisher of Wine
East (PA); Doug Frost, MW and MS, Wine Writer and Educator (KS); Ann
Miller, Marketing Consultant for the Missouri Wine & Grape Board
(MO); Jerry Pellegrino, Chef/Owner of Corks Restaurant (MD), Mike
Riley, Wine Buyer for Wegmans (NJ); Coke Roth, Wine Consultant (WA);
and Sandra Silfven, Wine Writer, Detroit News (one of my favorites).

The winners in every category will be announced on Wednesday… as will the Governor’s Cup (best overall wine) and Winery of the Year (which unfortunately is based on number of total medals instead of most golds or double golds).

Look for the results here later this week. You know I’ll have something to say about them.