Clio ‘19 and Roussanne ’21 Win Best Bordeaux Blend and Best White Wine – San Diego International Wine Competition 2023

This is the first time Muse Vineyards has competed in the San Diego International Wine & Spirits Challenge, and it was worth it! 2019 Clio and 2021 Roussanne won their respective classes.

Clio 2019 won Best Bordeaux Blend and a Platinum medal. It received 94 points. Clio is a delightful Bordeaux blend that pairs well with a wide variety of foods, but is also delicious on its own. Clio is the owners’ favorite blend, it is adjusted each year to complement the Bordeaux wines of that vintage. This is its biggest win since the Governor’s Cup.

Here is what one judge had to say about it:

Muse Vineyards (Shenandoah Valley, Virginia) Red Wine “Clio” 2019 ($35):  We California folk call this “the other Shenandoah Valley” with tongue fully in cheek.  A wine like this one stakes the claim for the “original” in Virginia with bright cherry and lively fall spice aromatics that translate well on the palate in dry style.  A supple grip knits things together nicely, and the flavors finish in mellow fashion.  This has lots of pairing possibilities – I’m leaning roast fowl as a pairing.” Rich Cook

Muse’s 2021 Roussanne has been winning awards left and right! And no wonder, with it’s delicious notes of peach and apple, it is a wine everyone can agree on. It was named Best of Show: White Wine and awarded a Platinum medal. It received 95 points.

Judge’s notes on Roussanne:

“Muse Vineyards (Shenandoah Valley, Virginia) Roussanne 2021 ($33):  Roussanne is notoriously difficult to grow and vinify well even in less-than-challenging locales, which Virginia is not among (as I can aver as a DC-area resident).  Humidity, heat and harvest season hurricanes will give you the idea, and we’re just sticking with “H” words there.  Be that as it may, this is a clear success, with lovely floral aromas offering lots of aromatic appeal but not tipping over the line into a “perfumed” profile like, say, Muscat or Gewurztraminer.  The wine’s flavors are nearly as generous, with notes of ripe peaches and the flavor of wild honey—but without the sweetness.  There’s enough acidity to keep all this delicious opulence in balance, but the balance is right already, so grab this soon and give it a rip.” Michael Franz

2023 marked the 42nd annual San Diego International Wine & Spirits Challenge. This year over 200 wineries from around the globe received medals. Judging was conducted by a large panel of wine experts with various backgrounds in the wine and food industry. Judging took place over two days in San Diego. All judging was performed in a “blind tasting” format.

Judges awarded Silver honors to wines that demonstrated above average character for the wine type and place of origin. Gold honors were awarded to wines that delivered additional complexity and character and rose above a straightforward recommendation. Platinum awards were reserved for the very best wines of the competition, wines that exhibited profound qualities as determined by the judges. All wines awarded Gold were given a score ranging from 90-93 points and Platinum awards ranged between 94 and 100 points.

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