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Hickinbotham’s Chris Carpenter crowned global Master Winemaker of the Year 2024

South Australia’s own McLaren Vale has been thrust into the global spotlight, thanks to the remarkable achievements of winemaker Chris Carpenter.

In a stunning celebration of viticultural excellence, South Australia’s own McLaren Vale has been thrust into the global spotlight, thanks to the remarkable achievements of winemaker Chris Carpenter. At the prestigious Master Winemakers ceremony, Carpenter was crowned Master Winemaker of the Year 2024, a title that has resonated across continents but finds its heart in the rich soils of South Australia.

The accolade was awarded for Carpenter’s exceptional work with the Hickinbotham Trueman Cabernet Sauvignon 2020, a wine that not only captured the top medal at the Global Cabernet Sauvignon Masters 2023 but also symbolized the pinnacle of winemaking craft.

The Master Winemaker 100 guide, unveiled at Wine Paris & Vinexpo Paris, profiles the year’s top 100 winemakers, with Carpenter leading the pack. This guide, published by the drinks business, is the result of a meticulous year-long series of blind tastings, judged by Masters of Wine. It’s a testament to the dedication and skill of those who shape the wine industry, offering a snapshot of the best in global winemaking.

Carpenter’s philosophy of “vineyard, place, simplicity” has guided his approach, leading to wines that are not only expressive of their terroir but also of exceptional quality. His work spans across continents, yet it is his contribution to the McLaren Vale through the Hickinbotham Vineyard that has truly captured the imagination of wine enthusiasts and critics alike.

The Hickinbotham Trueman Cabernet Sauvignon stands as a fantastic example of the region’s viticultural prowess. Grown in conditions that are nothing short of ideal, this wine is a harmonious blend of fragrance, flavour, and depth, thanks to the vineyard’s unique combination of elevation, aspect, and ancient soils. Its accolades are a reflection of McLaren Vale’s status as a premier wine region, capable of producing wines that are both elegantly powerful and capable of aging gracefully.

This year’s Master Winemakers awards also highlighted the diversity and quality of global wine production, with winners hailing from unexpected regions and showcasing a variety of styles.

Patrick Schmitt MW, editor of the drinks business and Chair of the Global Wine Masters, emphasized the importance of recognizing the individuals behind the wines. “Essentially, this guide is designed to shine a light on those talented people who toil deep within the dark environs of the wine cellar,” he remarked. This sentiment echoes our own, as we celebrate not just Carpenter’s win, but the collective success of all those who contribute to the vibrant tapestry of South Australian wine.

It wasn’t just Carpenter bringing South Australia into the spotlight at the awards. Of the 100 Master Winemakers named, 10 were Australian, and of the 10, 8 South Australian.

Read more about the winners here.

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