Southern Oregon Wine Institute and Abacela wines win double gold

Southern Oregon Wine Institute and Abacela wines win double gold »Play Video
The prize-winning wines from Abacela and the Southern Oregon Wine Institute submitted to the Chronicle’s wine competition.

ROSEBURG, Ore. -- Of the over 5,000 wines presented to the judges of the San Francisco Chronicle’s Wine Competition, two made at Roseburg’s Abacela received top honors.

The local winery’s Tempranillo Reserve and the Southern Oregon Wine Institute’s Vigonier were ranked double gold, the highest rank a wine in the competition could receive.

"Tempranillo is the pinnacle of what we do at Abacela,” said winemaker Andrew Wenzi. “So the 2009 Tempranillo spent two years in the barrel and two years in the bottle before we released it. It's a fairly new release and it's the first time it's been sent off to this competition."

The Southern Oregon Wine Institute’s associate director, Dwayne Bershaw, said his students saw their hard work turn into gold and silver for the Vigonier and Pinot Noir.

“I think it's important for our students to know that we can make top quality wine here,” said Bershaw. 

He said he believes these wins are a reflection on the grapes grown Southern Oregon.

“So all of these grapes that we won awards for come from Southern Oregon, so it's putting Southern Oregon on the map as a great place to make wine,” Bershaw said.