A judge in this year's national wine awards says the sauvignon blanc 2011 vintage was the stand out category.
Twenty-one judges, including five from overseas, sniffed, swirled and spat their way through 1500 entries from across every wine-producing region in the country last week.
The judging of entries in the Air New Zealand Wine Awards is now complete and the winners to be announced on Friday.
The chair of the judges, Steve Smith, says the quality of New Zealand wine improves each year.
He says the number of medals to be awarded is similar to previous years.