Everyone knows Shiraz, the name alone brings up memories of fruity, juicy and more often than not bold blackcurrant flavoured wines from Australia.
Originally a Mediterranean grape variety, Shiraz or Syrah (as it is know in in France) first landed in Australia in the 1830s and they have never looked back – Shiraz is now the number 1 planted grape in Oz. The true boom period for Aussie Shiraz though, came in the 1980s and 90s which saw it burst onto the international scene, swiftly becoming a household name.
Did you know?: Australia has some of the world’s oldest continuously productive Shiraz vines with some dating as far back as the 1840s
The typical Australian Shiraz is smooth and lush with ripe blackberry, black cherry fruit, rich savoury flavours and hints of blackcurrant, plum, chocolate, liquorice, mixed spices and one of the most instantly unique Aussie Shiraz characteristics – eucalyptus.
Did you know?: Many of Australia’s earliest winemakers were doctors. A certain Dr Christopher Rawson Penfold was one such medical professional. His home was called ‘The Grange’.
Australia’s Barossa Valley and McLaren Vale are two of the most famous regions for producing Shiraz. The Barossa Valley is the heartland for Shiraz, a warm continental climate an sloping hills give it perfect conditions, this is where the big bold flavoured Shiraz live. The McLaren Vale enjoys a maritime climate thanks to its proximity to the ocean and backdrop of gently folding hills, this ensures generous, elegant and flavoursome wines.
It goes without saying that the popularity of Aussie Shiraz is set to continue for a long time to come, it really is the grape that has it all!
See our picks of the best Australian Shiraz here: