2023 Varietal Winners

Top Rated: Grenache and Blends

By The Tasting Team

The old vine grenache resources of McLaren Vale and the Barossa are a national treasure, and in usual form, McLaren Vale has put forward more than half of our list of heroes and the Barossa almost one-third. The rise of cooler wine regions like Frankland River and the Yarra Valley is a trend to watch closely, but the old guard has this territory secured (for now). Again this year, 90-year-old Blewitt Springs bush vines convincingly declared their mettle, winning first place votes from four of the tasting team and securing another win for McLaren Vale.

2023 Best Grenache of the Year in Australia

Chalk Hill Alpha Crucis Old Vine Grenache 2020, McLaren Vale

98 points | Price when tasted $55

Chalk Hill Alpha Crucis Old Vine Grenache 2020, McLaren Vale

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From 90yo Blewitt Springs bush vines. The bouquet is expressive and enticing, as is the gorgeous, juicy and mouth-watering medium-bodied palate. Moving the wine back and forth in the mouth unlocks rivulets of earthy spices, running through the pomegranate and red forest fruits. Precision and purity. – James Halliday

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Learn more about grenache and blends in our essential guide.

*This is an edited extract from the 2023 Halliday Wine Companion, with reviews by Dave Brookes, Jane Faulkner, Ned Goodwin MW, James Halliday, Erin Larkin, Jeni Port, Philip Rich and chief editor Tyson Stelzer.

Top image credit: Wine Australia.