RULES & REGULATIONS
1. Entry deadline for wines to arrive is March 15, 2024. Wines are to be delivered to:
5515 Main Street
Manchester Center, VT 05255
2. Send ONE (1) BOTTLE per entry, multiple entries in one shipment is acceptable. Still wines must be submitted in standard 750 ml wine bottles. Ice wines or late harvest wines can be submitted in 375 ml bottles. Meads and Hard Ciders can be submitted in 12 oz. or 22 oz. beer bottles. Sparkling wines must be in champagne bottles with proper closure and wire. All bottles must be free of wax, decorative labels and capsules. However, an identification label will be required on the bottle as detailed in rule #5.
3. Entry fee is $30 U.S. dollars (or $30 Canadian dollars) for each wine entered. Each individual person is allowed up to a total of 15 entries. You may enter in as many categories as you wish. Make checks payable to WineMaker. Only U.S. or Canadian funds will be accepted. On your check write the number of entries (no more than 15 total) and the name of the entrant if different from the name on the check. Entry fees are non-refundable.
4. All shipments should be packaged to withstand considerable handling and must be shipped freight pre-paid. Line the inside of the box with a plastic trash bag and use plenty of packaging material, such as bubble wrap, around the bottles. Bottles shipped in preformed styrofoam cartons have proven reliable in the past. Every reasonable effort will be made to contact entrants whose bottles have broken to
make arrangements for sending replacement bottles. Please note it is illegal to ship alcoholic beverages via the U.S. Postal Service. Entries mailed internationally are often required by customs to provide proper documentation. It is the entrant’s responsibility to follow all applicable laws and regulations. Packages with postage due or C.O.D. charges will be rejected.
5. Each bottle must be labeled with the following information: Your name, category number, wine ingredients, vintage. Example: K. Jones, 9, 75% Baco Noir, 25% Foch, 2014. If you are using a wine kit for ingredients please list the brand and product name as the wine ingredients. Example: K. Jones, 22, Winexpert Selection International French Cabernet Sauvignon, 2015. A copy of the entry form, listing each of your wines entered, must accompany entry and payment.
6. It is entirely up to you to decide which of the 50 categories you should enter. You should enter each wine in the category in which you feel it will perform best. Wines must contain a minimum of 75% of designated type if entered as a varietal. Varietals of less than 75% must be entered as blends. To make sure all entries are judged fairly, the WineMaker staff may re-classify an entry that is obviously in the wrong category or has over 75% percentage of a specific varietal but is entered as a blend.
7. Wine kits and concentrate-based wines will compete side-by-side with fresh fruit and juice-based wines in all listed categories
8. The origin of many Native American grapes is unknown due to spontaneous cross-breeding. For the purposes of this competition, however, the Native American varietal category will include, but is not limited to, the following grape families: Aestivalis, Labrusca, Riparia and Rotundifolia (muscadine).
9. For sparkling wine categories, dry/semi-dry is defined as <3% residual sugar and sweet as >3% residual sugar.
10. Contest is open to any amateur home winemaker. Your wine must not have been made by a professional commercial winemaker or at any commercial winery. No employee of WineMaker magazine may enter. Persons under freelance contract with Battenkill Communications are eligible. No person employed by a manufacturer of wine kits may enter. Winemaking supply retail store owners and their employees are eligible. Judges may not judge a category they have entered. Applicable entry fees and limitations shall apply.
11. All wines will be judged according to their relative merits within the category. Gold, silver and bronze medals within each category will be awarded on point totals and will not be restricted to the top three wines only (for example, a number of wines may earn enough points to win gold). The Best of Show awards will be those wines clearly superior within those stated categories. The Grand Champion award is given to the top overall wine in the entire competition.
12. The WineMaker of the Year award will be given to the individual whose top 5 scoring wine entries have the highest average judging score among all entrants.
13. The Club of the Year, Retailer of the Year and U-Vint of the Year awards will be based on the following point scale:
Gold Medal (or any Best of Show medal): 3 points
Silver Medal: 2 points
Bronze Medal: 1 point
The amateur club that accumulates the most overall points from its members’ wine entries will win Club of the Year. The home
winemaking retail store that accumulates the most overall points from its customers’ wine entries will win Retailer of the Year. The U-Vint or On-Premise winemaking facility that accumulates the most overall points from its customer’s wine entries will win U-Vint of the Year.
14. The Best of Show Estate Grown award will be given to the top overall scoring wine made with at least 75% fruit grown by the entrant. Both grape and country fruit wines are eligible.
15. All entrants will receive a copy of the judging notes for their wines. Medalists will be listed by category online.
16. All wine will become the property of WineMaker magazine and will not be released after the competition.
17. All decisions by competition organizers and judges are final.
Entry deadline for wines to be postmarked for Vermont: March 15, 2024
Wines judged: April 12-14, 2024
Results first announced at the WineMaker Magazine Conference in Charlottesville, Virginia June 1, 2024 and will be mailed out to each entrant the week after.
Results posted on winemakermag.com June 2, 2024