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STILLWATER and Mures Upper Deck have been announced as the inaugural recipients of the Tasmanian Wine List of the Year Awards.

In 2014 Wine Tasmania and the Tasmanian Hospitality Association (THA) partnered on a new award to recognise licensed Tasmanian businesses supporting and promoting the local wine sector as part of the THA’s annual Awards for Excellence.

The Tasmanian Wine List of the Year Award aims to encourage licensed premises to feature the island’s outstanding wines as part of their overall offering,

It also recognises those businesses offering significant support to local wine producers.

At the THA’s Awards for Excellence gala evening last night Sheralee Davies, Wine Tasmania chief executive officer, announced the inaugural winners.

The judging was undertaken via a two stage process – an independent panel comprising Graeme Lynch (independent chair of Wine Tasmania) and wine writers Graeme Phillips and Winsor Dobbin reviewed the 14 applications, selected their winning venue and shortlisted eight.

The finalists were then promoted for a period of six weeks with the public encouraged to vote for their favourite.

Stillwater was selected as the judges’ choice and Mures Upper Deck was awarded the people’s choice award.

Davies congratulated Stillwater and Mures Upper Deck, as well as all the other finalists.

“The response to this new initiative has been very positive and it’s great to see so many businesses recognising the outstanding wines produced in Tasmania and promoting them as part of their business offering,” she said.

“The awards consider not just the number of Tasmanian wines on a wine list, but also the depth and diversity of the wine list as well as staff training and wine knowledge.”

“Having a wide range of Tasmanian wines available at restaurants, cafés, wine bars, clubs and hotels is an important part of the overall tourism experience.

“In the same way you would expect to have a large quantity of Champagne and Burgundy available to enjoy with a meal when you visit these wine regions, so too Tasmanians can be proud of our wine offering and share this with visitors to the island and to their venues.”

Davies recognised the other finalists – Black Cow, Grape Bar & Bottleshop, Me Wah Hobart, Pier One, Saffire and The Terrace, noting it was a particularly strong field of applicants.

Further details on the 2014 Tasmanian Wine List of the Year Award and voting are available on Wine Tasmania’s website at www.winetasmania.com.au/2014TasWineList

For further information contact Sheralee Davies on 0407 004 959.