Rodeo names wine champions

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HOUSTON - The Houston Livestock Show & Rodeo named the champion wines that will be featured at this year's show.

A sold-out crowd of more than 4,000 filled Reliant Center on Sunday for the 2012 Rodeo Uncorked! Roundup and Best Bites competition.

The event included the tasting of the 2012 International Wine Competition champion wines, as well as a food sampling and competition featuring area restaurants and catering institutions.

The wine competition had 2,454 entries from 736 wineries in Texas, across the United States and 20 countries, with 1,817 medals awarded by 18 panels of judges, consisting of local, national and international wine experts.

2012 Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo International Wine Competition Champions

Grand Champion Best of Show– Marchesi Antinori Srl Guado al Tasso, Bolgheri, 2007

Reserve Grand Champion Best of Show– Cellar Costers del Ros L'Obila, Priorat, 2004

Top Texas Wine – Messina Hof Solera, Texas, 2004

Top French Wine – Vincent Girardin Pouilly Fuisse, Vieilles Vignes, Pouilly Fuisse, 2009

Top All-Around Winery– Francis Coppola Winery, Nappa Valley

Top Wine Company – Trinchero Family Estate

Top Sparkling Wine– Laetitia Vineyard & Winery Brut Rose, Arroyo Grande Valley, 2007

Top White Wine – Marchesi Antinori Srl Castello della Sala Estate  Cervano della Sala, Umbria, 2009

Top Red Wine – Niner Wine Estates Twisted Spur, Paso Robles, 2008

Top Sweet Wine – Hardy's Whiskers, South Eastern Australia, NV

Top Value Wine – Red Diamond Winery Cabernet Sauvignon, Washington State, 2008

Attendees also tasted and cast votes in the Best Bites Competition.

2012 Best Bites Competition Winners

Popular Choice Award

First Place – Royers Round Top Café – Assorted Handmade Café Pies

Second Place – Hasta La Pasta Italian Grill – Savory Risotto Cake with Aged Beef Tenderloin
Trailblazing Appetizer/Entrée Award

First Place – Valentino Vin Bar – Slow Smoked Flank Steak with Fregola and Smoky Tomato Demiglace

Second Place – Straits Asian Bistro and Lounge – Braised Singaporean Spice Short Rib Rendang

Third Place – Beaucoup Bar & Grill – BBQ Shrimp and Grits
Two-Stepping Bread/Cheese/Dessert Award
First Place – Veldhuizen Cheese – Raw Milk Artisan Cheese
Second Place – Ooh La La Dessert Boutique – Blackberry Pie Bars

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