Tips for Winning at the NV&W Homemade Wine Competition

Here are a few tips to help bring home the ribbons at the 4th annual Nevada Vines and Wines Homemade Wine Competition.

First and foremost read the rules of the competition and know when the deadline for getting your wines in the competition are. NV&W is accepting wines until April 1st, so you have plenty of time right now. Within the rules are the cost of each entry, where to drop them off, size of bottles required, and the important wine categories. Be sure your wine application and label have the correct wine category you wish to have them judged in. There are a lot so read through each to be sure.

Once you have the wines and categories on the application and labels I would advise using a wine shipping box (like the one you get from your wine club deliveries) to put your wines in. The thick foam will help secure the bottles during transportation and help insulate against any unforeseen warm or cold weather they may be subject to. In selecting your wines for competition the only rule is that if you won a Gold ribbon in past competitions don’t enter the same exact wine. You can do a different vintage of the same variety or perhaps a blend you did involving that wine, but make sure you have 26% or more of the second wine type in the blend. You can enter an older vintage you may have been hanging on to as age will improve you wines, but we understand you may want to hang on to them for special occasions.

They are using the Danish System which means your are up against your wine’s own merits. We can have 5 Gold ribbon winners in a single category. There are the best of categories and best of show, those awards are for the top scorer’s in the respective categories but that is in addition to the standard category ribbon awards, so a bonus if you did a great job. The Danish system is the most used method in homemade wine competitions as we have more winners and more feedback making it more exciting to enter. Getting feedback from the judges is one of the most important reasons to enter your wines into the competition. Your friends, neighbors, etc. will likely drink your wine without saying much beyond “it’s good”. 3rd party judges can give you valuable information on how to make your good wines great and your great wines exceptional!

At the Awards Reception you will be able to pour your wine like a pro! There are tables set up for winemakers to pour and attendees to taste. It is a great way to not only get more feedback but to try other winemaker’s wines to see how they compare. At the Reception the awards will be handed out and feedback from the judges included. It is a great time to mix and mingle with the area’s best amateur winemakers. Who knows, they me be opening a winery soon right here in the Truckee Meadows and you can say you knew them from the beginning. This is one of the marquee events of the year for NV&W and all to enjoy.

Cheers and good luck!

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