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FORESTVILLE, NY (May 23, 2011) – While Merritt Estate Winery is a participant in many different national and international wine competitions throughout the year, it is always most rewarding to receive awards from competitions with a focus closer to home. The winery recently participated in the Great Lakes and Beyond Wine Competition, an event that helps draw attention to the often overlooked wine producers of the Eastern United States.

            The 2011 Great Lakes and Beyond Wine Competition was held at Oakland Community College Culinary Studies Institute in Farmington Hills, Michigan. In its sixteenth year, the judging event aims to stimulate improvement in the quality of wines produced not only in regions that surround the Finger Lakes, but of wines produced in regions throughout the Eastern United States. The event also works to enhance the reputation of the Eastern United States as a major grape growing and wine producing region.

            The event doubles as a competition and a walk around wine tasting. After participating wines have been judged, the event is opened to the public and offers wine tasting, food selections from area gourmet restaurants and live entertainment. Tickets are sold for the event and proceeds help to benefit the Oakland Community College Culinary Institute Scholarship and Competition Travel Fund.

            “We love to get involved in competitions where our wines are really given the chance to shine,” said Jason Merritt, General Manager at Merritt Estate Winery. “The fact that this competition doubles as an event to help raise money for culinary education made us want to get involved that much more. The food and wine industries work very closely with one another and we want to offer any and all of the support we can.”

            Merritt Estate Winery took home an astounding nine medals from the competition. Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Grigio, Edelweiss, Peach Splash and Bella Ice took home bronze medals. Chautauqua Niagara, Late Harvest Delaware and Bella Rosa took home silver medals. Gewurztraminer took a gold medal.

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Merritt Estate is located in America’s Grape Country, the largest grape growing region of New York State located along the shores of Lake Erie. The grapes and wines produced under Merritt rival the quality of premium vintages throughout the world.


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