Williamstown winery wins Best of Show award in N.J. wine competition (for 2019 Estate Petit Verdot)

Looking for the best wine produced in New Jersey? Try a 2019 Estate Petit Verdot from Autumn Lake Winery of Williamstown.

The 2019 Estate Petit Verdot won Best of Show Overall and the Governor’s Cup for Red Wine at the 2021 Garden State Wine Growers Association competition with a score of 94 (out of 100).

The wines were judged by the Beverage Testing Institute.

Nine wines were honored at the annual competition, including:

  • Governor’s Cup for White Wine: William Heritage Winery, Mullica Hill (2020 Unoaked Chardonnay);
  • Governor’s Cup for Dessert Wine: Sharrott Winery, Hammonton (2018 Wicked port-style wine);
  • Best New Jersey Hybrid Red 2021: Sharrott Winery, Hammonton (Tango Red Blend);
  • Best New Jersey Hybrid White 2021: Auburn Road Vineyard & Winery, Pilesgrove (2020 Solé)
  • Best New Jersey Rosé 2021: White Horse Winery, Hammonton (B2020 Estate Reserve Rosé);
  • Best New Jersey Sparkling Wine 2021: William Heritage Winery, Mullica Hill (2018 Blanc de Noirs);
  • Best New Jersey Sweet Wine 2021: Fox Hollow Vineyards, Holmdel (2020 Autumn Harvest Dessert Wine);
  • Best New Jersey Fruit Wine 2021: Tomasello Winery, Hammonton (NV Red Raspberry Wine).

New Jersey is one of the top producers of wine in the country, having produced almost 2 million gallons of wine across its over 50 licensed wineries in 2016.

Gov. Phil Murphy saluted the industry while announcing the winners.

“I’m proud to celebrate our growing viticulture industry,” he said. “The wineries recognized from all across the state produce some of the finest wines in the world, and we’re committed to continue supporting our small business community to build a stronger, fairer New Jersey economy.”

William Heritage Winery’s 2020 Unoaked Chardonnay and Sharrott Winery’s 2018 Wicked port-style wine. (Garden State Wine Growers Association)

New Jersey Department of Agriculture Secretary Douglas Fisher said the event recognizes a growing industry in the state.

“New Jersey wine growers dot our state with beautiful vineyards showcasing the many wines produced here,” he said. “New Jersey wines are appreciated by consumers not only here in the Garden State, but across the country.”

The state has American Viticultural Areas suited for grape-growing, including the Central Delaware Valley AVA, the Warren Hills AVA, the Outer Coastal Plain AVA and the Cape May Peninsula AVA.

Vineyards across New Jersey grow more than 80 grape varieties, including Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Pinot Noir, Riesling, Sangiovese, Albarino and Chardonnay. New Jersey’s wineries also produce a wide array of fruit wines.

New Jersey wines have received critical acclaim in national and international competitions like the San Francisco Chronicle Wine Competition and the Finger Lakes International Wine Competition. They’ve also garnered praise in major publications like Wine Enthusiast and Wine Advocate.

For a list of New Jersey wineries and regular events taking place at wineries and vineyards throughout the state, visit www.newjerseywines.com.