12 Lesser Known Red Wine Varietals of Australia

Shiraz rules the wines horizon in Australia, being the most produced, consumed and exported wine varietal. However, there are several other varietals of red wines which are also produced in Australia. These are lesser known but do make for a wide varietal mix for Australian wine regions.

Barbera: Barbera accounts for only 110 heactares of land area under cultivation, which is merely 0.08% of total area under vineyards in Australia. This is a premium red wine which sells in export market in price range of A$10 to 20 per litre.

Cabernet Franc: Cabernet Franc is grown in 330 hectares of land area whicih is 0.24% of the total vineyard area. This wine australia is exported mostly to UK and USA and the price of export of per litre of bottle ranges from $7.5 to $20.00 per bottle.

Dolcetto: This is another red wine grape which covers an area of 100 hectares. It is exported to other countries mostly in price range of A$5/litre to A$ 7.5/litre.
Dolcetto vineyard is declining since 2010.

Durif: Durif is another red wine variety which is grown in 620 hectares of land area. It is sold mostly in per litre price range of A$2.5 to A$5.0. UK and USA are the two major export markets.

Mataro/Mourvedre: This grape in used in preparing a blend of wines popularly called GSM. The vineyard area under this grape has been declining and currently stands at 750 hectares. This is a premium wine which sells at A$10.00/litre to A$20 per litre.

Nebbiolo: This red wine grape covers an areas of 110 hectares in Australia, most in wine regions of Yarra Valley and Hilltops. Interestingly, this is exported mostly to Denmark nad UK where this wine varietal is in good demand.

Nero d’avila: Nero d’Avila is grown on only 80 hectares of land area in Australia. The export of this wine has seen a growth of 271% as compared to last year.

Ruby Cabernet: This is grown in about 850 hectares of land area in Australia and is mostly present in Riverina and Riverland areas of Australia. This wine grape sells mostly in price band of A$2.5 to A$5.0 per litre.

Sangiovese: Sangiovese occupies 440 hectares of vineyard area in Australia. This is exported mostly to United kingdom which accounts for more than half of its total exports. Exported mostly in price band of A$2.5 to A$4.99/litre

Tarrango: Tarrango did not have any significant vineyard area under cultivation since 2011. Most of the Tarrango wines produced were exported to United Kingdom which accounted for alomst 75% of its exports. It sells well in price band of A$5.0 to A$7.5/litre.

Touriga: The last recorded vineyard area under Touriga grape was 50 heactares in 2010. The wine is sold exported in price range of A$20.00 and above for 1 litre. This is one of the most premium of red wines due to its rarity.

Zinfandel: Zinfandel is grown in only 90 hectares of land area. Barossa valley is the most important wine growing area for this grape varietal. Exports to US account for almost 60 percent of its exports.


Wine Review-Mt Langi Ghiran Cliff Edge Shiraz 2014 Grampians


Cliff Edge Shiraz has been produced from Mount Langi Ghiran estate in Victoria. The wine has dark red and bright purple hues. It carries aromas of cherry, blackberry and boysenberry from its bouquet, coupled with hints of pepper spice, clove and cocoa. The palate is of red and black cherry intensified by blue florals and pepper spice. This wine has length and balance brought about by a subtle oak influence, luscious tannins and fine acidity. It is good to have it with barbecued meats, lamb shanks and steak.

Gods of Wine From Ancient Mythologies

Wine is often touted as a drink of the Gods. No other alcoholic beverage has been associated with the Gods in such a positive manner. Generally, we are not advised to have any intoxicating drink due to our religious beliefs but it is also a fact that our ancient Gods did drink wines.


To begin with, let us turn to Greek mythology. The ancient Greeks even had a God of grapes-Dionysus. This shows how important was grape cultivation during those times for the Greeks. This God was not just for the grapes but also for winemakers and wines as such. Dionysus also exhibited two distinct moods of a person intoxicated with wines. One of the moods is of ecstasy and joy, and the other mood is of utter misery and chaos. Symbolism of these two facets of wine drinkers is unmistakable, and is true even now. True to those who drink excessively and become untamed, Dionysus was also a God for them who wanted people to live a life without bondages.

Now, let us discuss the Roman God, Liber. Liber was the God of viticulture. LiberAnd, besides viticulture, he was also the lord of Freedom and fertility. It is interesting to note that wines are also related to fertility and spirit of freedom world over. Liber represented male power.

Gods of wine are not exclusive to Europe. Even the South Africans had their Goddess of beer in Mbaba Mwana Waresa. Again, she is also a Goddess of Fertility.

Mbaba Mwana Waresa
Mbaba Mwana Waresa

The goddess is highly revered in South Africa for her invention of beer.

The Sumerians also had their wine God in Ninkasi. She is believed to be a brewer herself who made wines for Gods. These early brewers were women since it was considered to be a part of job of women folk.


Raegast, the Slavic God. Raugutiene, the fermentation God of Baltic countries, and Raugupatis, the beer Goddess of Baltic nations. Soma, the Hindu God. Sucellus, the Celtic God of agriculture and alcoholic drinks. These are some of the Gods who have been directly related to wines or other similar intoxicating beverages.

Penfolds St Henri Shiraz- A Premium Shiraz Wine

Penfolds St Henri Shiraz.jpg

St Henri is one of the many series of wines under the Penfolds wines label. This series was first launched in the 1950s, so it is more than 60 years old. The popularity of the wine has not waned ever since. Penfolds St Henri Shiraz is not a 100% shiraz wine. Rather, it also has a cabernet sauvignon content of about 4%. This gives the wine its striking magenta hue. This wine has been oaked for about a year before releasing it in market.

The wine has a great cellaring potential. It can be cellared for 30 years which makes it a great choice among wine collectors as well.

Wine Tasting- Banrock Station Chardonnay 2016


This is the latest wine that i tasted. Banrock Station is actually a wetland region of Australia, located in Riverina region of South Australia. This is also listed under the Ramsar Convention (check all Australian wetland regions under this convention here). This wonderful wine is from the Banrock Station named winery which operates from this region. Banrock station chardonnay of the 2016 vintage gives a taste of peach, citrus and pineapple. It carries 13% alcohol and is available at $8 per bottle but will have to buy a pack of 6.

If you have already tasted this wine before, let me know your opinion. Use the comments section below for giving your opinion.