Top Wineries of Australia 2021: 36 to 33
Location: Margaret River
Best known for: Cabernet sauvignon and blends bottled under several labels, also chardonnay led by the majestic Chloe Reserve, all from grapes grown in the Wilyabrup subregion.
Chloes figure brightly in the Watson family, evidently. The 2017 Chloe Anne Cabernet Sauvignon and 2018 Chloe Reserve Chardonnay lead the pack this year, while the 2017 Margaret Cabernet Sauvignon blend, named after another Watson family member, also impressed.
35. Lake’s Folly
Location: Hunter Valley
Best known for: Complex chardonnays which are among the region’s finest, and the quixotic cabernet blend instigated by Dr Max Lake in 1963.
A trio of 2019 wines showed the Folly is very much on song, the Hill Block Chardonnay leading the also excellent regular bottling of Chardonnay while the ‘Cabernets’—a mélange of cabernet sauvignon, merlot, shiraz and petit verdot—is an elegant, quietly powerful wine that is sure to reward extended cellaring.
34. John Duval Wines
Location: Barossa Valley
Best known for: The former Penfolds chief winemaker continues to build a magnificent array of wines, led by multiple bottlings of shiraz; old-vine mataro and grenache also thrilling.
The most recent addition is the stunning Integro Cabernet Shiraz 2017 (AUD $220). The affordable AUD $30 Concilio brand is another welcome addition, the 2018 Grenache Shiraz being our pick. Annexus labels Grenache 2019 and Mataro 2018 are benchmark examples of these grapes.
Location: Yarra Valley
Best known for: Deliciously elegant, fruit-driven chardonnay, pinot noir and, especially, the blend of Bordeaux red varieties simply labelled Yeringberg.
The 2017 Yeringberg Cabernet Sauvignon, a rare bottling of straight cabernet, is a magnificent wine, but scarce! The 2018 Yeringberg blend is hot on its heels while the 2018 vintages of pinot noir and chardonnay also rated highly. These are seamless wines of great fruit purity.