Australia ‘finally making wines that suit the Aussie lifestyle’

Australian winemakers are moving away from big bold reds towards lighter wines that reflect the country’s “sunshine and seafood” lifestyle, according to wine writer Mike Bennie.

Mike Bennie (left) and Andrew Caillard at the Australia Redefined tasting in London

Speaking at a masterclass on the ‘future icons’ of Australian wine hosted by Bennie and Andrew Caillard MW in London this week, Bennie explained how the country’s winemakers were “beginning to find their own cultural vernacular”.

“Australia’s historical winemaking past is being reimagined by a new generation of winemakers who are producing wines that suit the Australian lifestyle, which before has been largely overlooked.

“Big Barossa Shiraz doesn’t sit well with the way we live, breathe and socialise in Australia. We need tumbler and carafe wines that reflect our own place, which is starting to happen.

“We eat tonnes of seafood and Asian cuisine in Australia, and spend most of our time outdoors, and until recently have been drinking wines that don’t represent that lifestyle, but we’ve reached a tipping point and are starting to see wines being made that reflect our outdoor behaviour,” he said.

During the masterclass Bennie said that the growing ‘paddock to plate’ movement in Australia was influencing sommeliers’ winemaking decisions, who are increasingly listing wines that chime with the local, sustainable ethos.

He also pointed out wine is very much in vogue with the cool kids in Australia, which is proving beneficial for sales.

“There is a new energy surrounding wine in Australia – it is viewed as cool among the younger generation, who are keen to learn about it and be seen enjoying it on social media. People are chasing down unique wine experiences,” Bennie said.

“Millennials are embracing wine like never before in Australia and want to be seen as being knowledgeable about wine among their peers. The sizzling interest in the avant-garde wine scene in Australia has brought life and excitement back to the Australia wine industry,” he added.

One Response to “Australia ‘finally making wines that suit the Aussie lifestyle’”

  1. Marcelo Sola says:

    I’m tired of big Barossa Shiraz bashing. Big Australian Shiraz can be delicious and is as Australian as wine can get. Countries could benefit by not dumping the styles that put them on the wine map before following the last exotic fads imposed by egocentric sommeliers (and some winemakers, MSs, MWs, etc.) who are clueless about what most consumers want to drink. Drop the thin hyperacidic unsulphured watery concoctions made in qvevris for sommelier mental masturbation. Bring back the bold flavours.

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