Congressional Wine Caucus:
The Congressional Wine Caucus was formed in 1999 with the goal of emphasizing to Congressional members the importance of the wine industry in their respective districts and to allow the public a focus for industrial needs and requirements. There are currently over 215 members from both House and Senate who belong to the Congressional Wine Caucus. The original founders of the Wine Caucus were George Radanovich (R) from the 19th Congressional District in California and Mike Thompson (D) from the 1st Congressional District in California. Mike Thompson remains the democratic co-chairman of the caucus. With the retirement of George Radanovich, the Republican Co-Chairman of the Caucus is now Dan Lungren from the 3rd Congressional District in California. The Congressional Wine Caucus has been supportive of the efforts of the Atlantic Seaboard Wine Association to promote the east coast as a quality wine producing area which is in line with the charter of the Caucus. Representative Mike Thompson has sponsored in the past the Association’s annual award ceremony on Capitol Hill to permit attending award winning wineries to received the competition’s Best of Show Trophy and the competition’s Best of Category certificates from their respective Congressman. The award ceremony is held after the July competition usually in the Fall timeframe. This year (2012) it was sponsored by Representative Dan Lungren.
This year the award ceremony for the winners of the 8th annual competition was held on the 28th of November in room 1300, the House Agricultural Committee room in the Longworth House Office Building. Over 200 Congressmen, Chiefs of Staff, Legislative Assistants, staffers and winery representatives attended the event. In addition, members of the cadre from the Brotherhood of the Knights of the Vine poured from four tables to the assembled crowd. Members of the local American Wine Society and the German Wine Society also attended.
At this event, the Tiffany Sterling Silver Trophy is awarded to the BEST of SHOW winery and the recipient has their name engraved on it and is allowed to keep it for one year.
See photo gallery for pictures of this year’s event