Iain Riggs named Hunter Valley living legend

By Eliza Campbell

27 May, 2021

The ex-Brokenwood winemaker was awarded for over three decades of service to the wine industry. 

The winners of the 2021 Hunter Valley Legends & Wine Industry Awards have been announced. The awards, celebrating innovation, winemaking, viticulture, rising stars and legends of the region, have returned after a covid-hiatus in 2020. This year’s gala made special mention of the unprecedented challenges faced by the entire industry over the last twelve months and celebrated the resilience of the Hunter Valley as a whole.
Taking out the most prestigious award for Hunter Valley Wine Industry Living Legend was the revered Iain Riggs AM – recognised for his significant contribution to the Hunter Valley Wine Industry for more than 30 years. Iain recently retired from the helm of Brokenwood, where he worked as managing director and winemaker since 1982. In retirement, Iain and his partner Sally Margan have become custodians of the famed Mistress Block that has produced many iconic shiraz wines over the years. Iain, under his new guise Riggs Winemaking, also continues to provide winemaking consulting services in the region.

This year also saw the introduction of the inaugural Award for Innovation, created in the wake of last year’s challenges to celebrate forward-thinking individuals. This year’s winner went to Scarborough Wine Co for its clever and market-leading winery experiences, created as a result of COVID-19 restrictions. Family matriarch Merralea Scarborough was also recognised as the 2021 Hunter Valley Tourism Industry Living Legend for three decades of service.

Other award recipients included viticulturist Liz Riley, being jointly awarded the 2021 Hunter Valley Award for Excellence alongside Scott Bartlett from Tyrrell’s. Andrew Margan of Margan Wines was recognised as 2021 Hunter Valley Winemaker of the Year, while the prestigious Jurds 2021 Viticulturist of the Year was awarded to Steve Ferguson of Mount Pleasant Wines.

For a full list of all the awards finalist and recipients, click here.