Last chance for first major wine judging of 2013

By on December 23, 2012
Cloverdale Citrus Fair in northern Sonoma County

The Cloverdale Citrus Fair in northern Sonoma County is home to the San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition.

Christmas Eve is the last chance for wineries to enter the San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition, the largest wine judging in North America.

The competition is held in Cloverdale, Calif., in northern Sonoma County during the second week of January. It started as the Cloverdale Citrus Fair Wine Competition in 1983. Since 2000, it has been known as the San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition.

It also has grown from being a wine competition for wineries in Sonoma and Mendocino counties to all of California to the West Coast to nationwide. Last year, a record 5,500 wines were entered in the competition, making it the largest wine judging on the continent.

The competition brings in dozens of the best judges in the United States to blind taste and determine the best wines in America. For the past two years, Barnard Griffin in Richland, Wash., has won best rosé of the competition for its Rosé of Sangiovese. In fact, the wine has won a gold medal or better for a remarkable seven straight years.

Also part of the wine competition is a public tasting at Fort Mason in San Francisco. In 2013, the tasting will be staged Saturday, Feb. 16.

About Andy Perdue

Andy Perdue is founding partner of Great Northwest Wine LLC and a longtime wine columnist. He is a third-generation journalist who has worked at newspapers since the mid-1980s and has been writing about wine since 1998. He co-founded Wine Press Northwest magazine with Eric Degerman and served as its editor-in-chief for 15 years. He is the author of "The Northwest Wine Guide: A Buyer's Handbook" (Sasquatch, 2003) and has contributed to four other books.

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