The Shout Magazine (New Zealand)

Northern Young Vit winner announced

Tahyrn Mason from Villa Maria in Auckland has been named the Corteva Northern Young Viticulturist of the Year 2020, following a competition held at Marsden Estate in Kerikeri on Friday.

Pietro Aloisi from Marsden Estate was named runner-up.

There were four contestants competing in total, the other two being Matt Dixon from Te Motu and Sam Maguire from Kumeu River.

“It was a great atmosphere and all four contestants gave it their all, proving themselves to be talented, young professionals,” says Nicky Grandorge, Leadership & Communities Manager for New Zealand Winegrowers. 

As well as putting the Young Vits through their paces, the competition also provided an opportunity for the Northern Region’s wine community to get together.

Members travelled to Northland from Waiheke Island and Auckland to encourage their Young Vits, as well as catch up with each other and discuss the opportunities and challenges which lie ahead for the wine industry.   

The Young Vits were tested on all aspects of vineyard management, including trellising, machinery, pests & diseases, wine tasting, vineyard knowledge and budgeting. There was also an interview and quiz round. 

All contestants were given a bottle of Ihaumatao Chardonnay personally signed by Sir George Fistonich, a wine industry legend from Auckland, as well as engraved glasses from Northern Winegrowers.

Tahryn will go on to represent Auckland in the National Final in Martinborough in October.  There will be a total of six finalists, with the others coming from North Canterbury, Hawke’s Bay, Wairarapa, Central Otago and Marlborough.

The national winner will receive a prize package including a Hyundai Kona for a year, an Ecotrellis Travel Grant, a Corteva educational trip to Australia, Bahco golden secateurs and a leadership week.

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