Monday, November 10, 2014

My Top 10 Australian Wineries

Suppose you wanted to build a premium Australian wine cellar or Australian wine collection, and you wanted to keep it simple, what would be the top 10 wineries to chose from?

The way I thought about it was that the winery had to either have one wine in the top three of a variety or two wines in the top ten. Also, the winery should make wine that is typical Australian and does not follow a European path (now this could be controversial and is somewhat arbitrary). Nothing too scientific about it, so here goes

Penfolds - an obvious choice. No other winery in the world has such a range of wines which deliver at every price point.

Henschke - the most distinguished single vineyard Shirazes in Australia. The rest of the portfolio is uneven.

Leeuwin - a consistent world class Chardonnay producer. The other wines are catching up, but are not yet in this league.

Grosset - similarly, a world class Riesling producer. Other wines quite strong, too.

Wendouree - highly idiosyncratic wines with substantial aging potential. Shiraz is the pinnacle, Malbec is top shelf as well.

Torbreck - producer of full-bodied Rhone varieties with outstanding Shiraz and Grenache.

Moss Wood - Australia's best Cabernet Sauvignon, in my book.

Tyrell's - superb Semillon, also outstanding Chardonnay and Shiraz.

Bass Phillip - funky Pinot Noir, variable, but in some years world class.

Bindi - outstanding cool climate Chardonnay and Pinot Noir.

Two wineries I considered, but have not had enough exposure to, lately, were Lakes Folly and Wantirna. A number of others would be in some people's list, but I felt they were not unique enough. These were Giaconda, Clonakilla, Cullen, Mount Mary and some cool climate Victorian Shiraz producers.

So there you have it. Any thoughts?


Unknown said...

do you know where can i buy wine online?

Alontin said...


Your question is not very specific. Are you based in Australia? What kind of wines are you after? Basically, you can order online from most wine shops, be they part of the large Coles or Woolworths chains or specialist wine shops. There are also dedicated online shops. I suggest you simply go to google and you will find what you are after.

Sean Mitchell said...

Agree this is a strong list, although I had a mildly disappointing tasting of Bass Phillip pinot noir with ~10 years age on them a couple of years ago.

More generally, I wonder whether there are any newcomers in the last ~5 to 10 years that might be cellarworthy too. Many on this list - for good reason I might add - are the better known names and have been so for some time.

kr1 said...

I would put up Bannockburn, Giaconda and Mount Mary as contenders.