One thing that defines the palate of Hong Kong wine lovers is perhaps our almost fanatical affection for back vintage wines. Back vintage Old World fine wines tend to lead us all the way back to 1950s if not earlier. Well-aged versions often present drinkers with an ethereal cocktail of dessicated fruit, earthy; iron-charged, meaty finish. When it comes to New World fine wines, hunting down back vintages all the back to 50s is a much harder feat, though not impossible. Thankfully, the team has indeed tried a 1959 Yalumba Galway Vintage Claret (coming from the private cellar of Yalumba top management); or Napa reds from the 70s (library stock kept by the more established, sizable wineries like Spring Mountain Vineyard). It takes bit of luck, and the winery’s generosity to get a taste of those half-a-century old New World wines.

Let’s change the question. Name one New World wine region where you can find affordable, interesting back vintages options. Our answer goes straight to Australia. especially some of those 1990s to early 2000 Australian Shiraz (and Cabernets – we will leave it to another newsletter). There are ample great choices out there. Compared against their more youthful counterparts, these maturing Australian Shiraz will show rounder and more mellow. The generosity of fruit is still there, though instead of being intense and brooding, age gives drinkers a more harmonious, congenial taste profile. Take a look at our shortlisted selection of maturing Aussie Shiraz and why we like them.

Clarendon Hills Syrah Piggott Range

And if we have to choose one, among all else, to drink today. Our hearts go to 1998 Clarendon Hills Piggott Range Syrah. One of the “Grand Cru” under Clarendon Hills’ own classification, Piggott Range locates in Northeast Mclaren Vale where vines are grown in a site with a thin layer of rich red loam topsoil beneath which lie a thick pure slab of rock that restrain vine vigour. This adds minerally midtones and racy nuances to the wine (as it evolves with age).

Piggott Range (Photo Credit: Clarendon Hills)
Maturing Aussie Shiraz Selection Format Cases
Offer HKD
Per Btl
1997 d’Arenberg Dead Arm Shiraz
Super low yield, concentrated Old Vine Shiraz
6 x 75cl 1 GBP 298 HKD 550
1998 Clarendon Hill Piggott Range Syrah
At its peak to taste this wine’s rocky minerality
12 x 75cl 2 GBP 764 HKD 697
1999 d’Arenberg Dead Arm Shiraz
Super low yield, concentrated Old Vine Shiraz
6 x 75cl 2 GBP 266 HKD 494
1999 Magpie Estate The Gomersal Shiraz
Crafted by Barossa veteran winemaker Rolf Binder
6 x 75cl 1 GBP 146 HKD 284
2000 Fox Creek Short Row Shiraz
Best for lovers of bold, voluptuous Aussie Shiraz
6 x 1.5L 1 GBP 449 HKD 842
2001 Henschke Keyneton Estate Shiraz Blend
Henschke’s signature blend paying tribute to its historic brass band
6 x 75cl 8 GBP 158 HKD 305
2001 Kilikanoon Oracle Shiraz
Classic bright, forward, firm Clare Valley Shiraz
12 x 75cl 1 GBP 655 HKD 601
2002 Two Hands Deer in Headlights Shiraz
Classic fragrant, deep, elegant Eden Valley Shiraz
12 x 75cl 1 GBP 350 HKD 334
2003 Elderton Command Shiraz
One of Australia’s iconic 100- year old vine Shiraz
6 x 75cl 2 GBP 243 HKD 453
2004 John Duval Entity Shiraz
Crafted by ex Chief Winemaker of Penfolds, including Grange series
6 x 75cl 1 GBP 248 HKD 462
2005 Ben Glaetzer Amon Ra Shiraz
Ben’s genius touch balancing impressive fruit density and great structure
6 x 75cl 2 GBP 361 HKD 660

Please note that these offers and prices are only accurate as of the publishing time of this article. For updated availability and real-time converted prices, please refer to below interactive table. We do hope that the one-liner summary of the respective styles and highlights of individual wine help you find the right mature / maturing Aussie Shiraz for your enjoyment.

Cheers mate! (As the Australians love to say – way more often than global average…)