This week saw the annual Australia Day wine trade tastings take place in the heart of London.

Three great seminars showcasing Aussie wines in a different light and challenging the conventional assumption that all Aussie wines are big and brutish.  They are most definitely not – well, not always.

Today’s blog takes a look at Chardonnay – yup, that grape variety which (frustratingly) divides opinion.  We’ve all experienced some monster Chardonnays from Oz, and let’s face it, many of them ain’t pretty.  But times are a changing and over-oaked, over-extracted, highly alcoholised wines are increasingly a style of the past.  We tasted a charming range of top notch Chards that possess none of these qualities, just pure pleasure in the glass.  Hosted by Mark Davidson of Wine Australia, we sampled 8 examples of why Australian Chardonnay really does compete with the finest white Burgundies.  And just like Burgundy, they need time to develop and express themselves.  All 8 samples hailed from the astoundingly good 2015 vintage – and all 8 are guaranteed to improve with age (5 to 10 years would not be unappropriate).

So, to our marsupial friends living in the UK… we wish you well and trust you will be lighting the barbie later today, enjoying some tinnies and generally having a good time.  And when the time is right, spare a thought for shouting the virtues of your wonderful Chardonnays.  Let’s have a mega celebration and get busy converting those “ABC”ers out there!

Tomorrow, a word on Grenache.