WHEN it comes quality summer wines, Australia is indeed the lucky country.
Name any established global variety and you’ll find it growing somewhere around the continent.
A little over half a century ago, our winemaking efforts largely went into high-alcohol fortified wines. These days, this category has all but disappeared.
Times have changed and thankfully, for the better.
The table wine revolution dates back to the mid-1950s, around the time pioneering Australian winemaker Max Schubert stood history on its head with the release of his grand, Shiraz-driven Penfolds Grange, which remains Australia’s most famous and revered wine to this day.
As our modern wine industry began to gain traction, wine producers — and there are now some 2000 of them — began spreading their viticultural wings, introducing exciting new varieties in regions where they were most suited.
Cabernet Sauvignon soon started to attract rave reviews, Chardonnay became an overnight success story, Semillon and Riesling had their fans as well, and then along came the rocketing appeal of Sauvignon blanc.
Throw in merlot, pinot noir, verdelho, tempranillo and fiano, as well as the emergence of quality sparkling wine, and Aussie drinkers have never had it so good. Or so cheap.
Importantly, our wines are very reasonably priced. The major retail chains such as Liquourland, BWS and Dan Murphy’s have seen to that
These 25 wines, with a price ceiling of $30 a bottle, are drinks that are ideally suited to our warm climate, in keeping with the national trend, there are slightly more whites than reds.
The varieties virtually picked themselves, leaving me with the task of delving into some of the best vineyard sites in NSW, Victoria, Tasmania, South Australia and Western Australia to present readers with this fail-safe guide.
THE TOP 25 WINES FOR UNDER $30