2023 Halliday Top Rated

Top Rated: Cabernet Shiraz

By The Tasting Team

Cabernet shiraz blends are the pride and glory of South Australia and have defined its red winemaking history for some 140 years. The state still confidently dominates the top end of this category, and it is the warmer regions of McLaren Vale, the Barossa and Langhorne Creek that have excelled this year.

2023 Cabernet Shiraz of the Year

Hickinbotham Clarendon Vineyard The Peake Cabernet Shiraz 2020, McLaren Vale

97 points | Price when tasted $200

Hickinbotham Clarendon Vineyard The Peake Cabernet Shiraz 2020, McLaren Vale

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Sourced from the contoured quilt of estate vines, a confluence of silts, loams and ferrous outcrops. A traditional blend of the finest performing blocks and best barrels (50% new). A nose tingling with a visceral energy, such is the mineral-clad spine to this wine. Rich and powerful, to be sure, as the sweetness of shiraz and its blue-fruit aspersions meander across cabernet’s bones of finely tuned tannins, dried herb and cedar-oak cladding. Yet the overall effect is one of umami warmth, savoury depth and immense potential. This is an iconic wine and deservedly so. – Ned Goodwin

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*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.