In the last twenty years, Australia has become a wine juggernaut its current strategy will allow its growth to continue well into the foreseeable future. Most of the wine regions are clustered in Southern Australia, most notably in Southeastern Australia. Australia grows a diverse variety of grapes, and makes almost every style of wine imaginable, from sparkling wines to ‘sticky' dessert wines. Australia's wine regions are many but the following regions are most important: New South Wales, Victoria, Barossa, Clare and Eden Valley, Mclaren Vale, Adelaide Hills, and Western Australia. Shiraz is the primary grape in New South Wales, but Australia's most famous white, Hunter Valley Semillon hails from here. Hunter Valley Semillon is picked when ripe and made like a barrel-fermented Chardonnay. Victoria's principal grapes are Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Shiraz and Cabernet. Pinot has become a favorite for Victoria's growers, especially near the coast. Yarra Valley and the Mornington peninsula are solid areas for Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. Yarra in particular, has become a hotbed of sparkling wine production.
Barossa Valley Shiraz has undoubtedly become one of the most famous, recognizable styles of wine in the world. Barossa Shiraz is rich, full-bodied, spicy, fruity and often laden with sweet oak and spice. Shiraz loves the ample sunshine and heat afforded by the Barossa Valley and sometimes ripens too quickly, sacrificing acidity for ripeness. Cabernet, Chardonnay, Semillon and Grenache also do well in Barossa, but Shiraz is the natural, undisputed champion of this region.
Clare and Eden Valleys produce Australia's best Rieslings, which often age beautifully with time in the bottle.
These coastal regions are pretty much ideal for vines, as they are located between the Mount Lofty ranges and the tempering sea. The rainfall is adequate and the summers are warm and there is good air drainage to prevent frosts. Mclaren Vale produces fine reds from Shiraz, Cabernet, Merlot, but McLaren has also had good success with whites. Adelaide Hills has had outstanding success with whites and sparklers. Adelaide produces wines that have a lovely, fresh acidity. Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc lead the way, but Pinot Noir should be on the near horizon for some red wine success here.
"Red currants, cranberry, and dried Italian herbs on the nose. The palate features red, blue, and black fruits melded with sweet spiced cinnamon, vanilla chai, and cedar oak. Fine silky tannins add savory balance and length to the palate."
"Citrus and honeydew flavors are further complexed by gentle French oak aging. The palate is soft yet fresh with balanced acidity and a soft creamy finish."
"This Chardonnay shows the ripening powers of Australia but still maintains the glorious acidity of great Chardonnay with tropical fruit, toasty vanilla, lemon custard, and a dollop of cocoa butter on the finish. This is really well-made Australian Chardonnay for the price."
"Aromatic and subtly structured wine with Shiraz providing a backbone of solid dark plum and luscious depth of flavour. Grenache provides a dash of spice and cherry sweetness, taming the Shiraz beautifully, whilst Mataro adds extra layers to the tannins and a little funk and fragrance."
"93 Rating! Kahn's Staff. Deep garnet: there is a sappy complexity to the bouquet that is beguiling, with ripe red fruits, well-handled oak, and a hint of jasmine; the palate reveals more toasty oak notes, with fine-grained tannins and velvety texture a feature of the long finish: an elegant expression of the region."
"90 Pts. Wine Spectator. Lifted sweet fragrance, attractive cherry and mulberry with spices and truffle. Broad, fresh and open-textured, with floral blackberry flavors that float over refined tannins, echoing softly on the finish. Best from 2015 through 2020."
"This Bordeaux look-alike, a blend of 59% Cabernet Sauvignon, 18% Cabernet Franc, 16% Merlot, and 7% Malbec, offers a tightly knit bouquet of white chocolate, dried herbs, sweet berry fruit, and a hint of oak. This restrained, elegant, medium-bodied, moderately tannic wine boasts beautifully pure flavors as well as impeccable winemaking. Possesses both class and depth."
"94 Rating! Kahn's Staff. Bright up front, with raspberry and strawberry fruit giving way to an earthy, leathery note on the finish. Exhibits depth and persistence."