Top Wineries of Australia 2021: 40 to 37

40. Giaconda

Location: Beechworth

Best known for: Arguably Australia’s most prized chardonnay cast in an unapologetically full-throttle, super-complex style. This wine steals the limelight but the two shirazes and lately pinot noir are also outstanding.

The 2018 Estate Chardonnay top-scored but the 2018 Estate Shiraz and 2018 Warner Vineyard Shiraz were hot on its hammer. The 2018 Estate Pinot Noir is also a gold-ribbon wine, the best we’ve ever seen from this maker.

39. Head Wines

Location: Barossa Valley

Best known for: Alex Head makes modern Barossa reds with lifted spicy aromatics and great elegance, with increasing emphasis on the cooler Eden Valley.

The 2017 Wilton Hill Shiraz is the top scorer, a lovely wine from the famed Mattschoss Eden Valley vineyard, while the Redhead Eden Valley Shiraz 2017 and 2018 Old Vine Shiraz also popped their heads up. Delightful wines that reveal a new-found refinement in the Barossa.

38. Pierro

Location: Margaret River

Best known for: Michael Peterkin’s chardonnays are simply great, under both the estate and rare Vintage Reserve labels. One of the region’s original semillon sauvignon blanc blends, Pierro’s LTC is still a standard bearer while Reserve Cabernet Merlot is an exercise in elegance. The 2017 was Pierro’s top scorer.

The 2020 LTC is as good as they get, and the 2019 Chardonnay and 2017 Vintage Reserve Chardonnay both captured our hearts and palates.

37. Handpicked Wines

Location: Mornington Peninsula

Best known for: For a small wine business, Handpicked is impressively eclectic, selling a wide range of wines from all over not only Australia, but the world.

The relatively affordable 2017 Collection Mornington Chardonnay and 2018 Collection Barossa Grenache topped an interest-packed list, with 2019 Collection Tasmanian Chardonnay and 2018 Capella Vineyard Pinot Noir also hitting gold-ribbon scores. A 2015 Brindle Vineyard Merlot from Margaret River was the surprise packet.

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