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Also look to Xanadu, Stella Bella, Voyager Estate, Flametree, Robert Oatley, Larry Cherubino and Cullen for top Western Australian chardonnay.

Oakridge is leading the charge here (the 2018 Henk, 2018 Willowlake and 2017 864 Funder & Diamond in particular), as are Hoddle’s Creek, Giant Steps and A. The baseline quality of Yarra chardonnay is well up the curve.I think they will be well-regarded over time as well.” Varietal imports “The rising success of grenache shows that the right grape variety grown in the right place really dictates where great wine is made,” says Mc Laren Vale’s Steve Pannell.“You need varieties suited to landscape to make this happen and that’s what we are seeing with grenache, tempranillo and touriga nacional.The Adelaide Hills, Macedon Ranges and Tasmania are the other places that really rate a mention in the chardonnay discussion with smaller numbers of wines achieving very high scores.Michael Downer’s star at Murdoch Hill continues to ascend in the Adelaide Hills across three tiers of chardonnay with the 2018 Murdoch Hill Rocket Chardonnay leading our ratings, closely followed by wines from Shaw Smith, Henschke, Michael Hall, Longview and Ochota Barrels.The #realaussiewine mission we set ourselves – myself, Jack and James – was clearly stated from the beginning: rate the best and most authentic Australian wine on offer.

Without question the biggest change to the landscape of Australian wine is a redefined idea of quality that is founded, defined and delivered by the vineyard and not by winemaking or in the winery.

“We all thought they would be very muscular wines but we are seeing really pretty wines with ripe tannins.

The mild finish to the warm year seems to give the wines a cooler cabernet tail with a gorgeous line, a bit like 2014.” The previous 2017 vintage was the coolest in a decade for Margaret River and producers really had to hold out long and late in 2017 to get the balance and ripeness right. The other place to explore a highly distinctive and elegant style of cabernet is the Yarra Valley and the 2017 vintage has provided a high point for these claret-like wines. 1 2017 is exceptional and really defines the pinnacle, closely followed by De Bortoli’s Melba Reserve 2017 bottling, the Mount Mary Quintet 2017 and Dominique Portet’s 2017 Cabernet Sauvignon.

Vasse Felix, Moss Wood, Cullen, Juniper Estate, Cape Mentelle and Cloudburst to name a few.

“2018 is a beautiful vintage for cabernet sauvignon,” says Vasse Felix’s Virginia Willcock.

” High praise indeed, the highest possible, and words that could equally be applied to the Vasse Felix Heytesbury Chardonnay 2017 with the cool stony aromas and underlying tension reflective of the power and tension seen in great white Burgundy.