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The Royal Adelaide Wine Show is run by 
The Royal Agricultural & Horticultural Society of SA Inc

Royal Adelaide Wine Show Awards

Many Royal Adelaide Wine Show trophies are now named after individuals who have made a significant contribution to the South Australian and/or Australian wine industry. 

GRAMP, HARDY, HILL SMITH PRIZE FOR OUTSTANDING WINE OF PROVENANCE  

Awarded for the first time at the 2009 Royal Adelaide Wine Show, this trophy perpetuates the memory of three prominent South Australian winemakers, Thomas Mayfield Hardy of Hardy Wines, Sidney Hill Smith of the Yalumba Wine Company and Louis Hugo Gramp of Orlando Wines, who were killed in an aircraft accident in Victoria in 1938. In addition to Hardy, Hill Smith and Gramp, several other passengers were also part of a South Australian agricultural delegation. Hugo Gramp and Tom Hardy were members of the Society’s Wine Committee at the time of the tragedy – Gramp (1927-1938) and Hardy (1926-1938).

GEORGE FAIRBROTHER MEMORIAL TROPHY FOR MOST OUTSTANDING WHITE WINE IN SHOW 

George was educated at Roseworthy Agricultural College from 1919-1921. From Roseworthy he went to Walter Reynell & Sons Ltd before moving to NSW to work as a wine and spirit merchant. On his return to SA he was employed by Robert Bryce & Co Pty Ltd, Adelaide where he remained for the next twenty-four years. George Fairbrother’s wine judging started in 1946 at the Adelaide Wine Show. In the following thirty-one years he judged all over Australia, was widely regarded as a doyen of Australian wine judges and at the time was believed to been the only person who had acted as Chairman at every major Wine Show. George Fairbrother’s palate was legendary and he proved himself over many years as a fine wine judge and one of few that were capable of assessing the qualities of brandy. He was generous in sharing his knowledge and in giving friendly guidance to others in the industry.On retiring from Robert Bryce & Co he remained in the industry as a wine broker and cork merchant. He retired from judging in 1977, and died in April 1991.

MAX SCHUBERT AM TROPHY FOR MOST OUTSTANDING RED WINE IN SHOW 

First awarded for Best Consumer Table Wine in Show at the Royal Adelaide Wine Show in 1997, the Max Schubert Trophy honours Max Schubert, Penfold Wines Chief Winemaker (1948 – 1975) whose philosophy of persistence and innovation pioneered new techniques in table wine production. Following a study tour in 1950, he created the now famous Grange. Schubert was determined to make an Australian red wine which would rival the French in excellence and longevity but with a truly Australian character. Early vintages of Penfold’s Grange began winning awards in the early 1960’s and since then Penfold’s Grange has won countless awards and is recognised worldwide as a South Australian icon.

DR RAY BECKWITH OAM MEMORIAL TROPHY FOR BEST TRADITIONAL AUSTRALIAN RED BLEND   

Born in 1912 in Cowell, South Australia, Arthur Ray Beckwith (Ray) was responsible for some of the most fundamental innovations to Australia’s wine making industry. He is believed to be the first person in Australia, if not the world, to discover the role of acidity levels in wine spoilage and to implement the use of pH metering - using precision instruments. He also was the first to use atomic absorption spectrophotometry for quality assurance in winemaking (circa 1962) and discovered that the addition of cultures of specific yeasts to the wine production process greatly improved wine quality. These practices are now standards in the Australian wine making industry. Beckwith spent most of his professional life working for Penfolds Wines in outh Australia (1935 - 1973) and was responsible for much of the company’s success. He was also heavily involved in the Australian Wine Research Institute and other important wine committees and organisations. In July 2006 Ray Beckwith received Australia’s top wine award, the McWilliam’s Wines Maurice O’Shea Award, for recognition of his outstanding contribution to Australia’s wine industry.

PROFESSOR AJ PERKINS TROPHY FOR BEST CABERNET SAUVIGNON IN SHOW 

First awarded at the Royal Adelaide Wine Show in 1959 for the Most Outstanding Dry White Wine, this trophy perpetuates the memory of the late Professor AJ Perkins, Agricultural Scientist and Viticulturist. Prof. Perkins was SA’s first Viticultural Expert, a Principal of Roseworthy Agricultural College (1904-1914) and subsequently Director of Agriculture, South Australia (1914-1936). The Professor AJ Perkins Trophy is the Royal Adelaide Wine Show’s oldest named trophy.

KARL SEPPELT AO TROPHY FOR BEST OTHER VARIETAL RED 

Karl Seppelt, a third generation member of the Seppelt family was born in 1930 and educated at St Ignatius College in Sydney and Roseworthy Agricultural College. Karl Seppelt became Chief Viticulturist with B Seppelt & Sons Ltd in 1954 -1972, General Manager from 1972 -1979 and Managing Director from 1979 - 1985. Following the take-over of Seppelt’s by South Australian Brewing Holdings Ltd, Karl and his family established their own winery at Mt Pleasant. Karl was instrumental in advancing the Australian wine industry beyond a mainly fortified wine producer, and was instrumental in pursuing regions suitable for premium table wine production. This led to the rise of Riesling in the 1970’s and the establishment of Chardonnay in the 1980’s and 1990’s. Karl joined the Royal Agricultural & Horticultural Society of SA’s Wine Committee in 1973, he served as Vice Chairman from 1975-1982, was Chairman from 1983-2001 and the committee’s representative on the Executive Council of the RA&HS from 1986-2000. Karl retired in November 2004 and was subsequently made an Honorary Councillor. Karl Seppelt was awarded the Order of Australia in January 2006.

THE HURTLE AND NORMAN WALKER TROPHY FOR BEST SPARKLING WINE IN SHOW  

Hurtle Frank Walker (1890-1975) was born at Magill, Adelaide. His lifetime association with the South Australian wine industry began at the age of 10 when he obtained exemption from Magill Public School to pick grapes. At 14 Walker left school to take a job with Auldana Winery. It was here that he mastered the fundamentals of making champagne under the direction of Leon Edmund Mazure and was placed in charge of the sparkling-wine cellars at age 21. Following World War One, he returned to Australia in 1919 and established Romalo Cellars with Mazure. In 1926 he was appointed manager of the company, a position he held until his retirement. During the 1920’s, Wynns purchased Romalo Champagne Cellars and the name continued until the 1970’s when it became known as Seaview Champagne Cellars. Hurtle’s record of achievement in both the technical and business sides of winemaking was passed to his son Norman. Both men devoted their professional lives to the making of champagne using time-honoured traditional french methods. Under the Romalo label, Hurtle Walker carried on the méthode champenoise as did his son Norman later under the Seaview label. Today, Norman’s son Nick Walker continues the sparkling tradition established by his grandfather in partnership with David O’Leary under the name O’Leary Walker.

T.W.C ANGOVE AM, MEMORIAL TROPHY FOR BEST BRANDY IN SHOW 

This trophy salutes the memory of Thomas William Carlyon Angove, AM (1917 – 2010) who dedicated his life to the development of the wine industry, particularly in the Riverland. After completing a Degree in Oenology at Adelaide University, Roseworthy he followed the winemaking and distilling footsteps of his forbears. He was involved with Federal Viticultural Council, Australian Wine Research Institute, Association of Australian Agricultural Technologists, Australian Wine and Brandy Producers Association and from 1954 to 1995 served on the RA&HS wine committee. He was at the forefront of developments in broadacre vineyards with the establishment of the 480 Hectare Nanya vineyard in the Riverland between 1969 and 1980 and was awarded an Order of Australia in 1994 for service to the wine industry.

 JOHN FORNACHON MEMORIAL TROPHY FOR BEST APERA, TOPAQUE OR MUSCAT 

 The John Fornachon Memorial Trophy was originally offered for the Best Dry Sherry in the Royal Adelaide Wine Show from 1973 to 1998. This was to honour the work of John Charles Macleod Fornachon (1905 – 1968), wine microbiologist, who in addition to his important research into diseases, spoilage of wines and fermentation was a prolific publisher, lecturer and wine show judge. John Fornachon was a judge at the Royal Adelaide Wine Show for two decades from 1948 and was Principal Judge 1948 – 1965. He served on the RA&HS wine committee from February 1967 until his death in August 1968.