Varietal Spotlight: Shiraz

Shiraz is Australia's favourite red grape and a Rutherglen treasure. At All Saints Estate, we are lucky enough to have ancient vines with all the intensity and depth of flavour they bring. Shiraz thrives in moderate to warm climate areas and is a pleasure to work with.

The process of handcrafting premium Shiraz

A typical harvesting process for our icon Shiraz expressions, including Mount Ophir Estate, is to hand-pick and hand-sort fruit to ensure only the most suitable bunches are used.

Winemaking, of course, varies for every individual wine, but generally, the fruit will either be gently destemmed or crushed whole bunch and then transferred into a fermenter. At All Saints Estate, we have a beautiful historical winery with amazing open concrete fermenters. The must is open fermented here with plunging to imbue just the right amount of colour, tannins and flavour.

Once the free run has been transferred into barrels, the marc is placed into one of our antique basket presses and gently pressed. The wines are then allowed to mature in French oak barrels in a temperature-controlled cellar.

On the menu – best pairings for Shiraz

Shiraz is best suited to produce high in fats or ‘umami’ flavours, including grilled meats or vegetables. While cheeses are often popular matches with red wine, soft or blue mould varieties may clash with Shiraz, whereas a sharp cheddar can work well.

Recipe ideas include a chargrilled, medium rare beef tenderloin, served with fondant potato, Brussels sprouts (roasted with honey and hickory smoked bacon), and a juniper berry red wine jus. Or try a heavier duck dish or locally reared Rutherglen Lamb. The elegant acidity and fine structural tannin from Shiraz will hold up to all options well.

Top Five Shiraz Wines

The popularity of Shiraz is also due to its diversity and range of styles, from easy-drinking everyday wines to some of Australia's most sought-after, collectable fine wines. Here are out top five Shiraz picks.

2017 St Leonards Vineyard Shiraz $35

 A classic local Shiraz. Deep in colour with aromas of crushed red berries and dried herbs. Richly flavoured with sweet plum and dark fruit characters with a hint of spice in a smooth and balanced style.

2019 All Saints Estate Shiraz $35

Intense aromas of crushed red berries and dried herbs with a hint of pepper spice. Richly flavoured with plum, dark berry fruits and smooth mocha. Fine structural tannins give it great length on the finish.

2018 All Saints Estate Family Cellar Shiraz $80

An elegant and spicy Shiraz with bright aromatic characteristics. Its colour is deep garnet with bright crimson edges in the glass. On the nose, spicy (white pepper, nutmeg, aniseed) together with earthier notes. Medium to heavier bodied on the palate, expect juicy fresh red fruits (red cherry, red plum), some herbal flavours, balanced with well-integrated French oak.

2018 All Saints Estate 1920 Old Vine Shiraz $80

With deep red colour and intense aromas of crushed berries and dried herbs, this is a classic Rutherglen Shiraz. Richly flavoured with spicy plum, dark ripe fruits, and savoury spice from maturation in French oak. The finish is long and elegant, with the delicate fruit flavours lingering.

2019 Mount Ophir Estate Shiraz ($500)

Deep red in colour, this low-yielding, handmade wine is an ultra-premium, modern expression of Rutherglen Shiraz. Bright and intense aromas of wild blackberries, plums, and dark chocolate with notes of spice and cinnamon. Elegant, rich, and complex on the palate, this new generation Rutherglen Shiraz is only made in the best vintage years and