Peter Gago Named as Winemakers' Winemaker in 2012

05 Mar 12


Peter Gago has been named as the recipient of the 2012 Winemakers’ Winemaker Award, presented by the Institute of Masters of Wine and international trade publication The Drinks Business.

The announcement was made at a reception during ProWein in Düsseldorf, Germany, (5 March 2012) where Lynne Sherriff MW, Chairman of the Institute, and Charlotte Hey, Director of The Drinks Business, presented Gago with the award.

The award, introduced in 2011, recognises outstanding achievement in the field of winemaking. The recipient of the inaugural award in 2011 was Peter Sisseck.

Peter Gago joined the then Penfolds Wines Pty Ltd in 1989. He started his tenure making sparkling wine, then reds, and served as Penfolds’ red wine oenologist before being appointed Penfolds’ chief winemaker in 2002, making him only the fourth winemaker to be responsible for Penfolds’ flagship wine, Grange. Fresh out of university, Peter, a natural educator, initially taught maths and science prior to attending Roseworthy College, where he graduated as Dux of the Bachelor of Applied Science (Oenology). Peter has travelled and tasted extensively, literally visiting every continent and most countries in an effort to introduce people to Australian wine. Peter globally hosts master classes, tastings and various wine events, regularly appearing on radio, television and webcasts. Peter strives to simultaneously maintain the Penfolds wine style and explore new territories.

Speaking before an invited audience of more than 200 wine professionals at ProWein, Lynne Sherriff MW, who is herself a trained oenologist, said: “I am delighted to present Peter with the 2012 Winemakers’ Winemaker Award. His achievements speak for themselves and he is very highly regarded by his peers across the world. As such, he is an extraordinarily worthy recipient of this award and a great international ambassador for winemaking.”

Anthony Hawser, Chairman of The Drinks Business said: “Peter is a stalwart guardian of one of the finest wines in the world and has been responsible for improving Penfolds’ overall reputation as one of the world’s great winemakers. As such The Drinks Business is delighted to recognise Peter’s achievements with this award.”

Peter Gago commented: “This award offers outstanding global recognition for Australian winemaking - winemaking on the other side of the world, winemaking spanning almost two centuries. Naturally, it’s a terrific accolade for the Penfolds’ winemaking team past and current. By years of Penfold’s service (only 23!), I am still almost the most ‘junior’ member of this team. I’m naturally chuffed and thankful. I’m also feeling guilty – it’s harvest and I’m 12,000 miles away. Payback, no doubt, awaits when I return in a day or so.”

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