CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) - The wine wars have begun.
The 30th Annual Monticello Cup Wine Competition began Monday at Barboursville Vineyards, as judges gathered to taste, sniff, and eyeball 71 wines, all seeking to take home top scores.
To qualify for the competition, a wine must be made of at least 85% grapes from the Monticello American Viticultural Area, which is made up of parts of Albemarle, Fluvanna, Greene, Nelson, and Orange counties.
“This is showcasing some of the top wines in the region so the winemakers take this very seriously," Competition Coordinator Frank Morgan said. "Winning the Monticello Cup means a lot to a winery, it adds a lot of credibility to their wines, it helps with sales on the wines.”
The event is sponsored by the Monticello Wine Trail, a group comprised of 33 central Virginia vineyards. Entrants in the competition ranged from red to white wine, heavy to light, and sparkling to dessert.
“It is also a good way for us to show a picture of what’s being produced in the area, and to show the consistency, when it comes to quality, with what we can do. So for us, it’s very important," Competition Chair Mathieu Finot said. “Yes, it’s part of the competition, but overall is just to show to the public what we think is the best.”
While judging took place Monday, the results will not be announced for several weeks. The top-scoring wines will be unveiled at the Monticello Cup Awards and Wine Auction on March 27.