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Our commitment to learning & development in the Australian wine industry

Applications for the 2020 Sydney Royal Wine Assessment Scholarship are now closed. The Sydney Royal Wine show is passionate about supporting the Australian Wine Industry through learning & development.

The Royal Agricultural Society of NSW (RAS of NSW) is a not-for-profit organisation that has been an influential force in the direction and development of Australian agriculture through competitions, education and events since its foundation in 1822. Today, through the KPMG Sydney Royal Wine Show, we are promoting and rewarding excellence in Australian winemaking through several key initiatives.


The KPMG Sydney Royal Wine Show is committed to attracting the very best professionals as Judges and Stewards, providing an excellent environment for networking and professional development to all participants, resulting in benefits for the industry at large.

Development of Judges

The judging panel for the KPMG Sydney Royal Wine Show is selected by Chair of Judges, PJ Charteris and the RAS of NSW Wine Committee and aims to include a combination of wine educators, winemakers, wine marketers, retailers, sommeliers, journalists and expert amateurs of wine from across Australia.

The RAS offers Associate Judge Positions to a range of young industry professionals, including high-performing graduates from the Len Evans Tutorial; the Wine & Spirit Education Trust (WSET); Sydney Wine Academy; and the Court of Master Sommeliers (CMS). For more information visit

Trade Seminars

The KPMG Sydney Royal Wine Show has partnered with the McWilliam’s Academy of Wine since 2009 to invite members of the trade to the Show each year for a hands-on educational experience. Participants are given the opportunity to taste and judge Show Exhibits, and are invited to compare their scores to those of the expert judging panel, providing an invaluable experience for wine professionals and aspiring Judges.

Educational Wine Program

Following the Wine Show, small quantities of excess wine stock are donated to a number of tertiary educational institutions across Australia. This stock and their associated scores are used to re-create judging panels as part of the classroom learning process.

Len Evans Tutorial

Since 2008, the RAS has sponsored one student to attend the Len Evans Tutorial, valued at $10,000. This prestigious program, said to be “the best wine school in the world’’, was initiated in 2001 by Len Evans AO OBE, Chair of Judges at the Sydney Royal Wine Show for over 25 years. The program is held over a five day period; just twelve students are exposed to a wide range of wines from around the world of various vintages. Blind tastings and judging is conducted daily up to 30 varietal wines from at least five countries, spanning up to 30 years. The wines are judged under Australian wine show conditions. For more information please visit

2019 - Steven Paul (Dux)

2018 - Julian Grounds (Dux)

2017 – Stuart Horden (Dux)

2016 – Adam Cotterell (Dux)

Grants & Scholarship Fund

The Royal Agricultural Society of NSW conducts an annual Wine sale, using a portion of excess wine show stock, to benefit the Australian Wine Industry. All proceeds will fund Wine Industry Scholarships and other initatives. Proceeds will not become part of the Wine Show working capital nor benefit the RAS of NSW.

In 2018, the money raised assisted in expanding the RAS Foundation Scholarship programmes for 2018/19, as detailed below and this will continue in 2019/20. In addition, through a new grant partnership with Wine Australia, funds will be used to promote the Australian Wine Industry, supporting wine education and Australian wine exports.

Sydney Royal Wine Show Study Scholarship

The Sydney Royal Wine Show Scholarship, first awarded in 2013, honours the memory and contribution of Graham Thorp, Chair of the Sydney Royal Wine Committee from 1984 - 1990.

The Sydney Royal Wine Committee, in partnership with the RAS Foundation, offers an annual tertiary scholarship to foster the growth and development of Australia’s next generation of wine industry leaders. This national Award encourages and supports a student who demonstrates passion and leadership and who is committed to contributing to the Australian wine industry. Students may be studying anything from agriculture science, horticulture, viticulture, oenology through to marketing, sommelier, lab technician and journalism.

The scholarship has the value of $6,000 for full-time study or $3,000 for part-time study along with opportunities to network with leaders in the wine industry.

Applications for the 2020 Sydney Royal Wine Show Study are now closed. For more information visit:

Scholarship Winners:

2019 - William Schibeci

2018 - Tim Dexter

2017 – Hannah Mckay

2016 – Alex Beckett

2015 – Sam Collins

2014 – Nicholas Schirripa

2013 – Brendan Carter

Sydney Royal Wine Assessment Scholarship

Are you aged 30 years and under and passionate about the wine industry? Since 2017, the Sydney Royal Wine Committee, in partnership with the RAS Foundation, offers the Sydney Royal Wine Assessment Scholarship. This national award aims to encourage and support young professionals who are passionate about wine and committed to forging careers that will contribute to the Australian wine industry.

The scholarship winner receives a fully paid position at the Australian Wine Research Institute's Advanced Wine Assessment Course taking place in May 2020 in Adelaide.

Applications for the 2020 Sydney Royal Wine Assessment Scholarship are now closed. For more information visit:

Scholarship Winners:

2019 - Nadja Williams

2019 - Samantha Payne

2018 - Thomas Colman

Your opportunity to make a difference - Would you or your business be interested in supporting a Sydney Royal Wine Scholarship? If so, please contact RASF at