The winemakers who enter the competition do so not just for the bragging rights of the awards but also to get feedback from the judges. Judges have some discretion. Some wines have faults and some do not. If a judge marks a wine lower for a characteristic that can be corrected, the winemaker can then make an adjustment to his/her wine prior to finishing and bottling. That is probably the most valuable feedback for the competition entrants.
The competition is held in early June and the deadline for entry is usually mid-May. Four Best of Show awards (for Red, White, Fruit and Dessert Wines) are announced the day of the competition with the remaining awards posted the next day. The ribbons (and sometimes medals) are mailed about 4-6 weeks later.
Labels are also judged during this competition. Awards are presented for Best of Show along with Gold, Silver, and Bronze in each label category.
Home Winemakers will be notified within 1 day of the judging and winners will receive the appropriate Best of Show, Double Gold, Gold, Silver, or Bronze award, which makes a fine addition to any wine cellar.
Best of Show, Double Gold, Gold and Silver award-winning wines will be displayed in the Wine Courtyard during the OC Fair, exposing your wines to 1.3 million fair attendees., which runs from mid-July to mid- August. Although Home Winemakers can’t sell our wines, we can appreciate the Bragging Rights from our award-winning wines!Current Results
Since the Wine Society’s inception in 1976, and the development of the Scholarship Program, the Orange County Wine Society has raised and donated $700,000 in scholarships to students studying enology (winemaking), viticulture (grape growing), wine appreciation, and culinary arts at several colleges throughout California. Most of this money is funded from wine tastes at the OC Fair.