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The Len Evans Tutorial group, 2017

The 17th Len Evans Tutorial was held recently in the Hunter Valley from 6th November to 10th November 2017. Scholars come from the fields of winemaking, viticulture, liquor retailing, restaurant, marketing and journalism.

The top achievement at the tutorial, known as The Basil Sellers Prize for Dux went to Julian Grounds, Head Winemaker/General Manager at Margaret River winery McHenry Hohnen.

As Dux of the 2017 course, Grounds has now been guaranteed judging positions at the Sydney Royal Wine Show and the National Wine Show in Canberra.

Len Evans Tutorial Trustee James Halliday mentioned that Grounds judged exceedingly well across the four varietal sections and was the equal highest placed scholar on the Riesling Dissertation.

Grounds will be flown business class to Europe with invitations to the greatest wine houses.

In a new collaboration, the Len Evans Tutorial is working with the Institute of Masters of Wine in promoting the MW Introductory Course held in Adelaide. The Institute has generously provided flights, accommodation and covered the cost of attending.

The inaugural recipient of this is collaboration is Kavita Faiella, brand ambassador for Shaw and Smith, who impressed the Tutors throughout the week with her tasting ability and participation.

Julian Grounds with James Halliday

Many of the rarest, oldest, and greatest wines were opened during the tutorial week for the 12 participants. Rarities include d two wines from Maurice O’Shea, a 1954 Mount Pleasant Light Dry White Riesling L54/15, a 1947 Mount Pleasant Henry 111 Dry Red and a 1917 Seppeltsfield Para Liqueur Tawny drawn from cask.

“These are the people at the forefront of grape growing, winemaking and selling premium wine.”


“These are the people at the forefront of grape growing, winemaking and selling premium wine. The dramatic increase in sales of imported wine, shows a sophisticated consumer. A better awareness of premium Australian wine and where it sits in relation to imported wine, is essential to the industry getting its message out to the world,” said tutor Iain Riggs.

Scholars from past Tutorials are now gracing the judging benches at all major wine shows across Australia. In the 2017/18 financial year Brisbane, Sydney, Canberra, Melbourne and Hobart, will all be Chaired by Len Evans Tutorial scholars, who will also lead a number of state and regional wine shows.

Twelve fully paid scholarships are offered, each with wine, food and accommodation valued at $10,000. The only cost incurred by the scholars is transport to the Hunter Valley.

The Tutors for the 2017 Len Evans Tutorial were:
James Halliday, Ian McKenzie, Iain Riggs, Gary Steel, Samantha Connew, Randall Pollard and Tyson Stelzer.

Further information is available at http://www.lenevanstutorial.com.au

Julian Grounds featured as Young Gun winemaker on page 70 of the November edition of Grapegrower & Winemaker.