Best Australian Red Wine to Drink in 2024

Australian red wine, despite being relatively new to the wine world (compared with, say, French red wine) is known for its quality and exceptional flavour, and has become increasingly sought out by wine lovers all around the world. 

Some of the most popular Australian red wine varietals are Shiraz, Grenache, Cabernet Sauvignon and Pinot Noir, but there are plenty of lesser-known varietals and blends that are widely considered to be some of the best red wines in the world. 

So to help you navigate the extensive choices available to you, we’re sharing our favourite Australian red wines to buy right now, and if you’re looking for more information on Aussie red wine varietals and regions (so you can impress everyone at your next dinner party), we’re breaking that down, too.

In this article

Our top ten Australian red wines

Kilikanoon Revelation Shiraz 2018 (RRP $550 - our price $520)

This incredible Clare Valley Shiraz is picked and fermented most years, but is often culled prior to release, with only the absolute best of the best making it into bottle. There have been just four releases of Revelation Shiraz between 2008 and 2023, and for this vintage, Kilikanoon made just 1,725 bottles from the best parcels of fruit they grew in 2018. 

Complex and refined, this wine offers blackberries, cherry, milk and dark chocolate, incredible quality French oak, effusive acidity and perfectly modulated tannins. It has massive fruit intensity and will cellar for 20 years or more.

Sam Kim gave it 97 points, and we’re comfortable comparing it (favourably) to the 2018 Penfold’s Grange (that’s not just our opinion – this wine has been mistaken for Grange in a recent blind tasting)!

Martins Vineyard Limited Shiraz 2020 (RRP $150 - our price $100)

Drawing on Shiraz plantings from the 1950s, this McLaren Vale Shiraz is a small-batch wine (each release is only about 600 barrels) that frequently earns medals, points and accolades - this 2020 vintage has collected a gold medal, 97 points from Sam Kim and 96 points from Ken Gargett. It exhibits plenty of fresh black and blue fruits without any jamminess, all balanced by oak. 

Our customers rate it a perfect five stars, calling it a ‘top-shelf winner’.

Drink now, or age for up to 20 years. 

Get it for less in an expertly-curated pack

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Curtis Small Batch Grenache 2022 (RRP $85 - our price $60)

The Curtis family history of winemaking began in Italy where, in 1499, the Cardinal de Medici charged Paolo Curtis with looking after the papal lands around Cervaro, including the establishment of vineyards and olive groves. Members of the Curtis family still farm in the area today, while others moved to Australia and began making wine in McLaren Vale in the 1970s. 

This Grenache is crafted from 120+ year old vines, and treads the fine line between power and finesse, with candied raspberries dancing around a core of dark fruits filled with cherries. An underlying richness leads to a length that doesn’t outstay its welcome. 

Cellar for up to a decade.

Dandelion Lion’s Tooth of McLaren Vale Shiraz Riesling 2019 (RRP $40 - our price $28)

Perhaps a cheeky addition to this list, given that it’s a blend of red and white, but in a sea of (excellent) Shiraz, we couldn’t miss the chance to highlight this unusual blend. And, given that it’s made with only six percent Riesling, we think it still counts as a red. 

Dandelion’s McLaren Vale Shiraz fruit was fermented on top of Riesling skins and hand plunged twice a day for eleven days, before careful basket pressing into predominantly older (but some new) French oak.

This three-time gold medal winning 2019 Lion’s Tooth Shiraz Riesling was bottled without filtration or fining, to capture the essence of the vineyard. Expect cherries, chocolate, clove, spice and plenty of fine tannins. Decant if drinking now or cellar for a decade or more.

Boho Farm Queen Bee Reserve Pinot Noir 2021 (RRP $60 - our price $55)

Boho Farm in South Australia’s Fleurieu Peninsula is a 35-year-old vineyard that Geoff Hardy planted back in 1988. High elevation and cool climate, with plenty of iron in the soil and a maritime influence, makes for a good spot to grow Pinot, which they do exceedingly well.

Their 2021 Pinot Noir is an intriguing wine made with a reserve selection from their best vines, offering structure and powerful depth of flavour. This is a wine that will improve with cellaring, with a drinking window from now till 2030. Definitely worth decanting.

Our customers rate it a solid five stars, saying ‘if you love Pinots, you must try this.’ We wholeheartedly agree.

Get it for less in this pack (36% off RRP).

Majella The Composer Coonawarra Cabernet Sauvignon 2021 ($25)

Coonawarra producer Majella is one of the most awarded wineries in the land. The family has been in the region for five generations, first planting vines in 1968, and today they have 144 acres of stunning vineyard (and a trophy cabinet full to bursting). 

Their Composer ‘21 Cabernet has picked up six gold medals, including Top Gold at the Royal Adelaide Wine show, and four trophies, including the Winestate Magazine Trophy for best Cabernet of the year.

A medium bodied wine with bright red and blue fruits and cassis, expect subtle French oak cedar and plenty of fine - but assertive - tannins on the finish.

Drink now or age until 2035.

Hentley Farm Clos Otto Shiraz 2021 (RRP $270 - our price $260)

This is an exceptionally dense and concentrated Barossa Shiraz, which reveals an elegance and grace belying its power. Just 12 Barossa Shiraz have scored higher than the 98/100 that this 2021 Clos Otto has just received from James Halliday’s Wine Companion. 12 wines across the entire history of the Wine Companion, and five of those were for various vintages of Penfolds Grange.

Wine Companion said of this stunning wine: ‘A study in fruit density and grace... plush fruit and latent power. Some finish, too! Long, sustained and rich, it's a no-brainer.'

The Real Review also scored it 98/100, saying it 'retains tension and focus right to almost never-ending finish. A benchmark of Barossa.' 

Another wine that was mistaken for Grange in our blind tasting.

Drink now till 2040.

Allegiance Wines Single Vineyard McLaren Vale Graciano 2020 ($30)

Allegiance wines is Tim Cox, who spent 20 years working for big corporates in various roles before electing to take the plunge and get into winemaking. And he’s more than proven himself with wines like this Graciano, which is drink-by-itself friendly, food friendly… and just generally friendly, but in a serious kinda way. 

Graciano is a lesser-known varietal, originating in Spain but growing well in McLaren Vale’s Mediterranean climate. This five-time gold medal-winning wine exhibits herbs, blue fruit and spice on the nose, with mulberries, blueberries, spice, dried herbs and black pepper on the palate. 

It’s undoubtedly classy, and very well put together. 

Cellar now till 2030.

Richard Hamilton Centurion Shiraz 2019 ($90)

This Shiraz is sourced from Hamilton’s own tiny patch of 120+ year old vines in McLaren Vale. 

Halliday’s ratings for the previous 10 vintages are all in the mid-to-high nineties, and this is as good as the very best vintage produced to date; perhaps a smidge better. It boasts a gold medal, 96 points from Halliday and Kim Brebach, and 94 from both The Wine Front Magazine and McLaren Vale Wine Show 2021.

It’s a brilliantly concentrated wine stacked with layers of flavour, texture and richness, and will cellar for 30 years plus.

Colab and Bloom McLaren Vale Montepulciano 2021 (RRP $25 - our price $20)

Colab and Bloom is a winery owned by Norm Doole and Mike Farmilo. Mike Farmilo is the winemaker, former maker of Penfolds Grange and twice winner of the Jimmy Watson trophy. Nick Whiteway and Brad Rey from Zonte’s Footstep are also heavily involved. 

From these heavy-hitters come heavy-hitting wines, like this superb Fleurieu Peninsula Montepulciano, the best vintage from Colab and Bloom so far. 

A beautifully structured mid-weight wine exhibiting powerful blue and black fruits, black cherry and bay leaf. Quite big by Montepulciano standards, with a decent lick of oak. It needs decanting to coax out the fruit, suggesting that it will be a long-lived wine.

Cellar until 2032.

Australian red wine varietals

There are over 160 grape varieties grown in Australia, so we won’t be listing all of the reds, but the most commonly-grown red varietals are Shiraz, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Grenache, and Pinot Noir

Luckily for us, there are plenty of producers around Australia also growing lesser-known grape varieties, with incredible results. 

Some of the rarer red wines that are starting to grow in popularity in Australia are Barbera, Durif, Nebbiolo, Sangiovese and Tempranillo, but that’s by no means an extensive list!

Australia is also known for its blends. Wines like GSM (Grenache Shiraz Mataro) are popular in Australia, and provide a rich combination of flavours that you wouldn’t get from a single varietal.

Australian red wine regions

As proud South Aussies, we could talk your ear off about how incredible the red wine regions on our doorstep are. We’ve got the Barossa Valley, famous for its Shiraz; McLaren Vale, which excels at Grenache; the Coonawarra, renowned for Cabernet; and the Adelaide Hills, which grows exceptional cool climate Pinot Noir. Plus there’s the Clare Valley, Eden Valley, Fleurieu Peninsula… you get the idea. 

But there are plenty of Australian red wine regions outside our beloved state, too. Western Australia’s Margaret River produces noteworthy Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot, Victoria’s Yarra Valley makes world-class Pinot Noir, and New South Wales boasts the Hunter Valley, which grows, among other varietals, some wonderful Shiraz. 

Take a look at our full list of wine regions to learn more about each one.

Best recipes to pair with your Aussie red wine

Not sure which Australian wine to pair with your dinner? We make recommendations for every wine we stock – head over to our red wines selection, and check out the food pairing suggestions under the wine specs section of each wine. 

To help with some top-line ideas, though, here are three recipe ideas to pair with each of Australia’s four biggest red wine varietals. 

Food to pair with Australian Shiraz

Beef cheek ragu  

Steak tacos 

Slow cooked beef cheeks and kangaroo in red wine  

Food to pair with Australian Grenache

Pork and black pudding burger  

Panzanella salad 

BBQ Korean chicken  

Food to pair with Australian Pinot Noir

Wild mushroom risotto 

Crispy skin duck breast  

Moroccan meatballs with roasted cauliflower  

Food to pair with Australian Cabernet

Easy carve lamb 

Korean steak tacos 

Grilled lamb and roasted veg salad 

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