Oregon Wine Competition® Announces Impressive Set of Judges, Becomes Statewide Competition

Oregon Wine Experience logoOregon Wine Competition® Announces Impressive Set of Judges,

Becomes Statewide Competition

MEDFORD, Ore.–The Oregon Wine Experience® is pleased to announce that a panel of six exceptional judges has been finalized for this year’s Oregon Wine Competition® to be held August 6-7. These nationally renowned experts herald a significant change in the competition. Previously restricted to wines made with 100 percent Southern Oregon AVA grapes, this year the competition will open up to all wines made with 100 percent Oregon AVA grapes. This change represents the evolution of Oregon Wine Experience® and the Oregon Wine Competition® into prominent wine events for Oregon and the entire Pacific Northwest.
The judges for the 2016 Oregon Wine Competition® include:
  • Mollie Battenhouse:  Master of Wine, Advanced Sommelier.
  • Bob Foster:  Chief Judge, Central Coast Wine Competition, Paso Robles.
  • Tim Hanni:  Master of Wine, Wine Industry Faculty at Sonoma State University.
  • Richard Jennings:  Wine Writer & Critic, RJonWine.com.
  • Adam Lapierre:  Master of Wine, Teaching Staff at San Francisco Wine School.
  • Luke Sykora:  Wine Writer, Senior Editor – Wine & Spirits Magazine
Note: Master of Wine (MW) is the most prestigious title in the world of wine and is issued by The Institute of Masters of Wine in the United Kingdom. There are currently only 338 Masters of Wine in 24 countries.
Full Bios
Mollie Battenhouse, MW
Mollie graduated cum laude from Wesleyan College and later enrolled in the Culinary Institute of America, where she graduated at the top of her class. She obtained her Masters of Wine designation in 2015 and is currently the Director of Sales and Business Development for V.O.S. Selections in New York and New Jersey. Mollie is also an Advanced Sommelier with the Court of Master Sommeliers.
Bob Foster
Bob is the Assistant Editor of the California Grapevine wine newsletter, and has served as a wine judge for over 25 years. He is the Director of the Mid-American Wine Competition and Chief Judge of the Central Coast Wine Competition in Paso Robles. Bob is also a retired prosecutor, retiring after 33 years of service with the California Attorney General’s Office.

Tim Hanni, MW
Tim is a professionally-trained chef and one of the first two resident Americans to successfully complete the examination and earn the title Master of Wine. He is a Certified Wine Educator accredited by the Society of Wine Educators and has been involved with wine and food related businesses, education, and research for over 35 years. Tim is also recognized for introducing the concept of the “umami” taste phenomenon to the wine and food community.

Richard Jennings

Richard is a wine writer and critic, and was recently honored as one of the “Top 100 Most Influential People in the U.S. Wine Industry” for the second year by IntoWine.com. His blog, RJonWine.com, has been a finalist for numerous awards, including best overall and best writing awards. Richard is also a “favorited” tasting note writer (and most prolific) on CellarTracker, where he has contributed over 35,000 tasting notes.
Adam Lapierre, MW
Adam is a Master of Wine based in San Francisco, California. who began his career working in New York’s Finger Lakes Region. After earning the Certified Sommelier designation from the Court of Master Sommeliers, Adam went on to pursue various credentials from the Wine and Spirits Education Trust. Adam now works as an industry consultant, wine educator, writer and wine judge. He’s also a member of the teaching staff at the highly regarded San Francisco Wine School.

Luke Sykora
Luke is the Senior Editor for Wine and Spirits Magazine and a freelance wine writer. Luke has an MFA from the Iowa Writer’s Workshop, and has taught writing at the universities of Iowa and San Francisco. In 2014, Luke was awarded the Frank Prial Fellowship for the Symposium for Professional Wine Writers at Meadowood Napa Valley.
The Oregon Wine Experience and Oregon Wine Competition are annual events held in Jacksonville, Oregon in the heart of the Rogue Valley in southern Oregon, which is considered to be one of the best wine regions in the country. The signature wine event benefits the Children’s Miracle Network through the Asante Foundation and Asante Rogue Regional Medical Center, one of 170 CMN Hospitals in the country providing pediatric care, treating 17 million children annually. In 2016 the Oregon Wine Experience raised over $500,000, and 100 percent of those proceeds went to Children’s Miracle Network and other Asante healthcare programs including the purchase of training mannequins for birth and delivery.

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