Australia has a huge diversity of wine
regions producing some of the best wines in the world.
Wineries stretch right across the continent,
areas through to the coast. There are even wineries thriving in the
Outback. Take Chateau Hornsby near Alice Springs for example. This
winery caters for large numbers of tourists who come to taste the dry
reds and whites produced here.
Wines from Australia regularly win major
international awards. The
latest example is the Nepenthe Ithaca Chardonnay, produced by
Australian Vintage. It was judged the Best Chardonnay in the
the 2009 Decanter World Wine Awards in London. This is the world’s
biggest wine competition. The classy chardonnay beat more than 10,000
wines from more than 2,000 producers.
Australia's most famous wine is Penfolds
The great 1955 vintage was submitted to competitions beginning in 1962
and over the years has won more than 50 gold medals. The vintage of
1971 won first prize in Syrah/Shiraz at the Wine Olympics in Paris. The
1990 vintage was named 'Red Wine of the Year' by the Wine Spectator
magazine in 1995, which later rated the 1998 vintage 99 points out of a
possible 100. Wine critic Hugh Johnson has called Grange the only First
Growth of the Southern Hemisphere. The influential wine critic Robert
who is well known for his love of Bordeaux wines, has written that
Grange "has replaced Bordeaux's Pétrus as the world's most
Other red wines to garner international attention include Henschke Hill
of Grace, Clarendon Hills Astralis, D'Arenberg Dead Arm, Torbreck Run
Rig and other high-end Penfolds wines such as St Henri shiraz.
The information included on Australian wine
labels is strictly
aspect of this is that the label must not make any false or misleading
statements about the source of the grapes. Many names (called
geographic indications) are protected. These are divided into "South
Eastern Australia", the state names, zones (shown in the map below),
and subregions. The largest volume of wine is produced from grapes
grown in the warm
climate Murray-Darling Basin zones of Lower Murray, North Western
Victoria and Big Rivers. In general, the higher-value premium wines are
made from smaller and cooler-climate regions.
Australian Wineries - Some
Australian wineries are huge, and
produce wine in large
quantities, to be shipped all over the world. But there are more than
5,000 boutique wineries scattered around the nation, most of which
offer cellar door tastings. Many also house cafes and restaurants
serving gourmet food, often with an emphasis on local
produce. Click here to find out more...
DID YOU KNOW?
wine industry is the fourth-largest exporter in the
exporting over 400 million litres a year to a large international
export market that includes "old world" wine-producing countries such
as France, Italy and Spain. There is also a significant domestic market
for Australian wines, with
Australians consuming over 400 million litres of wine per year. The
wine industry is a significant contributor to the Australian economy
through production, employment, export and tourism.
Vine cuttings from
the Cape of Good Hope were brought to the penal
colony of New South Wales by Governor Phillip on the First Fleet
(1788). An attempt at wine making from these first vines failed, but
perseverance, other settlers managed to successfully cultivate vines
for winemaking, and Australian made wine was available for sale
domestically by the 1820s.