Australian wines


Australia in terms of wine making is pretty young and new in the field. Captain Arthur Philip, first Governor of New South Wales, in 1788 planted the first vines. He took help of French prisoners of war whom he brought from England. They had fair amount of knowledge of wine making. Australia viticulture owes most to James Busby, a teacher in an orphanage. He collected 20,000 cuttings of 678 varieties of vine in 1834 and planted the same in Victoria, near Melbourne and in South Australia.
The revolution in quality terms has been immense. Australia can now boast of world's most talented and knowledgeable wine makers.
Australia's best wines are named after the grape they are made from, known as varietal wines.
Many of wines are known by generic names like Hock, Claret, Burgundy etc.
1.    Dry white - Chardonnay, Rhine Riesling, Muscat, Chenin blanc, Semi lion, Gewurztraminer, Sauvignon blanc.
2.    Sweet White- Muscat, Riesling
3.    Red - Cabernet Sauvignon, PinotNoir, Merlot, Shiraz, Malbec.

Australia has warm climate therefore the grapes have high sugar content. The rainfall is approaximately 20-25 inches a year. Heavy wines are produced by vineyards which are in warmer low altitude areas. Fortified wines and full bodied wines of burgundy style are produced in Corawa and Albury where summers are hot and low rainfall. Rich dessert wines are produced in Victoria.

The vintage takes place in Australia in the end of February i.e. in march and April. The method of viticulture and vinification are the most modern in the world.

Australia is made up of seven states: Western Australia, south Australia, new south Wales, Victoria, Tasmania, northern territory and Queensland. The latter two states are too northerly for wine making. 


PFDR (Pure Food and Drug Regulation) is the governing body for regulating the Production of wines. Federal government custom officers from the excise department maintain vigil over wine production.


I South Australia - It produces more than 50 percent of all the wine produced in Australia. The growing areas range from enormous (river land), to medium size (Barossa - Eden, Adelaide hills, southern vales and Langhorne creek),to small(Adelaide plains, Clare valley, Water vale, Connawarra and padthaway)
(a) River land: produces everyday wine. Muscat and Shiraz are most popular.
(b) The Adelaide Plains: This region produces Australia's most famous wine, Max Schubert's Grange Hermitage from Penholds.
(c) Barossa: It is responsible for over 25 percent of Australia's grape production. Good Shiraz wines are made here.
(d) Adelaide Hills: It is famous for Petaluma wines and wines from Piccadily vineyards.
(e) Southern Vales and Langhorne Creek: It is famous for rich, elegant red shiraz wines, now stylish white wines are also made from Sauvignon blanc and Semillon. The famous wine makers of this region are Geoff Merrill and Greg Trott
(f) Clare Valley and Watervale : They produce best Rhine Rieslings, crisp herbaceous Sauvignon blancs.

(g) Coonawarra : it produces Cabernet Sauvignon (red) and Shiraz (rich berry flavored red). The large companies like Lindeman’s and Mildara, small one like Bowen Estate operate in this valley.
(h)    Padthaway/Keppoch: It is known for their Chardonnays. Area is controlled by producers like Hardy \ Seppelt and Lindeman's

Bern Estates
Kaiser /stuhl
Woiff Blass
Wynns and Yalumba

II. Victoria: One of the Victoria's greatest asset is versatility because of its climate being very hot to more temperate. It produces wide range of wines, although it is a smallest state. It is famous for sweet fortified wines made from Muscat and Muscadelle (tokay) grapes. Seppelts produce delicious sparkling wine using champagne grapes i.e. PinotNoir, Pinot Meunier and Chardonnay.

III.Tasmania : This island to the South of Victoria is a very small producer concentrating on Chardonnay, Rhine Riesling, PinotNoir and sparkling wines.

IV. New South Wales: It is a home to many of Australia's smaller top white wine producers. The hunter valley is the state's centre of quality wine production. The region is famous for Chardonnays, classy Shirazes and dry rich Semillons.

V. Western Australia: The best vineyards are the Margaret and Swan rivers. The superb wines of this region are Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon, Riesling, Shiraz and PinotNoir. Famous producers are (i) Broken Wood (ii) Hungerford Hill (iii) Peterson's (iv) Robson (v) Rosemount (vi)Tulloch (vii) Wollundry.


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