Australian Wine, Red
Most people would think that the warmer the wine region, the better the wine. Yes, warmer climates do produce rich, full flavoured grapes. But red varieties which produce lighter and more delicate red wine styles prefer cooler climates.
Australia is known for its sunshine and warm weather, but one can also find wine regions with cooler climates in Australia. Whatever you are looking for in terms of red wine, it is probable that you will find it in Australian red wines.
The most popular variety of grape in Australian wine making must be Shiraz – the greatest of which is produced in the regions of Barossa Valley and Hunter valley. And yes, even the wine industry succumbs to worldly trends, and Shiraz is currently “the” wine to be drinking. Shiraz has also been called “Syrah” and you may hear this term in other countries. Shiraz is the most widely planted grape variety in Australia and probably the most important. It consistently produces outstanding medium to full-bodied wines, deep crimson in colour and with rich, ripe plum and pepper flavours. Most Shiraz wines benefit from oak maturation and may be kept for many years. (For more information see Wine Storage)
In a close second place among Australian red wines is the classic red variety of Bordeaux, Cabernet Sauvignon. Australia is also famous for its blends of the two wines, Shiraz and Cabernet Sauvignon, which they call Shiraz Cabernet. Regions famous for Cabernet Sauvignon wines are Coonewarra and Langhorne Creek. Cabernet Sauvignon is an elegant, structured wine which can be medium to full-bodied and is typically leafy, with ripe cassis-like flavours. (For more information see Wine Facts)
Merlot, still a ladies wine, has only recently become a popular Australian red wine. It is generally a soft wine, and often blended with Cabernet Sauvignon to produce an easy drinking wine. Merlot is another famous Bourdeaux red variety and often used to ‘introduce’ people to drinking red wine.’ (For more information see Wine Tasting)
Grenache is not a very popular name in wines, and is often blended with Shiraz. Grenache blends are better enjoyed chilled and served with spicy foods. Grenache wines are highly perfumed, round and with lots of flavour.
Pinot Noir is a tricky grape, producing different flavours when grown in different regions. In Australia Pinot Noir is used to create some of the greatest Australian sparkling wines, or elegant dry red wines.
Australian red wines are certainly amongst the top in the world, and the best grape varieties are grown here in abundance!