Platinum Awards

The top-scoring wines of the 2021 Platinum Awards were led by the Chris Daniel Winery 2017 Malbec, a bottling in Quincy, Wash., featuring Stillwater Creek Vineyard in the recently established Royal Slope American Viticultural Area. (Photo by Jenny King/JKingPJ)

Each year, Great Northwest Wine builds upon the history of the Platinum Awards, a competition staged each October with a tradition that is unlike any other in the Pacific Northwest. The 2022 judging will be staged in late October in Washington state’s Columbia Valley.

The judging panel for the 22nd annual Platinum Awards featured:

  • Kristine Bono, certified sommelier, Texas Hill Country
  • Tim Donahue, winemaker/consultant, Horse Thief Wine Solutions, Walla Walla
  • Kent FitzGerald, KW FitzGerald Consulting, Walla Walla
  • Gary Hayes, proprietor, Savor NW Wine Awards, Cannon Beach, Ore.
  • Ellen Landis, certified sommelier/journalist, St. Petersburg, Fla.
  • Richard Larsen, research winemaker/enologist emeritus, Washington State University, Puyallup, Wash.
  • Dan Radil, journalist/proprietor, Bellingham Northwest Wine Festival, Bellingham, Wash.
  • Ken Robertson, columnist/editor, Great Northwest Wine magazine, Kennewick, Wash.
  • Gordy Venneri, co-winemaker, Neher Family Wines, Milton-Freewater, Ore./co-founder, Walla Walla Vintners

Moderators were Eric Degerman, Great Northwest Wine, Richland, Wash.; Jerry Hug, Great Northwest Wine, Kennewick, Wash., and April Reddout, Reddout Wine Consulting, Kennewick, Wash. The judging coordinator was Mike Rader, First Vice President, Senior Financial Advisor, Merrill Lynch Wealth Management, Kennewick, Wash.

Backroom team included Fernando Alvarez, Marie Clark, Terry Graff, Sue Anne Marple, Vanessa Metcalf, Paul Sinclair, Reneé Staat and Dan Staat.