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Local Riesling best in show

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Greg Gallagher doesn’t pay too much attention to wine awards.

He believes that ultimately, the look, smell, taste and feel of a wine and how much it is loved by the drinker will always come down to an unquantifiable personal taste.

But a group of international judges – coming from New Zealand and Germany, the United States and Australia – have determined that  Gallagher’s 2017 Riesling is the best in the world. This means there is a more than fair chance that white-wine lovers are going to find it enjoyable too.



Last Friday, Greg and his wife Libby scooped the pool of awards for their Riesling at the Canberra International Riesling Challenge – considered the premium Riesling show by producers worldwide and drawing more than 500 wine entries internationally.

They took the opportunity on Monday to celebrate with an award lunch at Pialligo Estate – which while suffering the blow of the loss to fire of its famed farmhouse restaurant, is still operating all of its pavilions and the glasshouse.

“I wanted to show support for these guys who do a magnificent job, and to enjoy the place,” Greg said.

Greg Gallagher

Greg Gallagher

And he has a lot to celebrate.

The Gallager’s entry won four awards: Best from the Canberra District, Best in Australia, Best Dry Riesling and Best Wine of the 2017 International Riesling Challenge.

“Of all the awards, this is the one where I really respect the opinion of judges – as they are very experienced,” he said.

He and Libby established their Murrumbateman winery in 1999 with Greg a winemaker since 1974.

In the 80’s he began climatic research to look for the areas most suited to produce both a rich, full and soft style of Shiraz, as well as the fruit-driven white wine styles. He started planting Shiraz and Chardonnay vines in 1995 for the first 1999 harvest and since then has expanded to producing Riesling, Sauvignon Blanc, Merlot and three different styles of sparkling wine.

Since first producing his Riesling in 2004, Gallagher Wines have been awarded 10 Gold medals, seven Silver medals and have been awarded “Best Riesling” by James Halliday in 2012.


Greg said the recognition would help him get his brand out there in an extremely competitive marketplace. But he also said he would always respect the taste buds of each customer as being unique.

“We do our very best to produce something that looks, smells, tastes and feels nice, but as a winemaker, it is not about trying to please everyone – as you can’t. In the end, it comes down the individual, and I like to see as many people as possible enjoy as many wines as possible.

You can find out more about Gallagher Wines via their website

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