Please Note: the up-to-date lists are now on my website:
Kim, April 2013
Note on availability and quality
To avoid frustration, this list is made up of
largely commercial wines that are readily available from the big grog shops. I update
this list on a regular basis. If
you have a good wine merchant left in your neighbourhood, count your blessings. If you
buy wine direct from your favourite vineyards, you're probably happy.
There's a lot of what Philip White calls 'industrial autoplonk' in this price group. There are also plenty of cheap and cheerful, inoffensive wines. What I've tried to do here is to find wines that are better than that, everyday drinking wines that are agreeable and even enjoyable rather than just OK for the money or simply tolerable.
Note on pricing
The pricing used here is ‘street’, that is the
best current or recent price for a wine bought in 6 or 12 packs (mixed). At Dan
M, 1st Choice and Vintage Cellars of late, the magic number is 6, at Kemenys, BWS, Winestar and MyCellars it's still 12. The wines listed also reflect the regular promotions run by
the bigger wine companies on their commercial lines. I've included a few wines that are just over $10.
In the run up to Christmas, Woolworths and Coles nudged their prices up, knowing that people will buy more grog. 1st Choice Liquor cut its six-pack discount from 10% to 5%, effectively raising prices by 5%. Kemenys played no such games, and I applaud them for it.
McWilliams Hanwood Chardonnay 2009 - $8 at Kemenys
3 years old, more nutty oak than fruit but well-made and flavoursome. Real bargain.
Montes Classic Series Chardonnay 2011 – $8.50, Dan M
Varietal flavour, supported by well-judged oak, complex and satisfying. From Chile.
De Bortoli Windy Peak Vat 7 Chardonnay - look for specials <$10
Clean and fresh and fruity, easy on the gums, a slick and simple package
Devil's Ridge Block 7 Margaret River Chardonnay 2012 -$10 at Kemenys
Fresh and crisp white with hints of citrus, melon and stone-fruit and melon. Oak plays a minor role.
Hidden Label Central Ranges Sauvignon Blanc Semillon 2011 - $10 at Kemenys
This turns out to be the Cumulus Rolling Sauvignon Blanc Semillon. 94 points from JH
Annie’s Lane Riesling 2012 – look for specials around $10
2012 was a great Riesling vintage in Clare, and
this is much better than usual.
Peter Lehmann Classic Riesling 2011, $10, Kemenys
One trophy and two golds, but try it first - it's an early picked, green-apple-crisp style
Paul Mas Marsanne - $7, Dan M's
Clean, well-made wine from the Languedoc in the south of France
Paul Mas Cabernet Sauvignon 2010 - $7, Dan M
Clean, well-made Cabernet from the Languedoc
Montes Classic Series Cabernet Sauvignon 2011 – $8.50, Dan M
Serious, interesting Cabernet with layers of flavour. Bargain.
Montes Classic Series Merlot 2011 – $8.50, Dan M
This is elegant, plush and silky Merlot that will seduce most palates
McWilliams Hanwood Cabernet Sauvignon 2010 - $7, Kemenys
A wine of surprising elegance, good mouthfeel and length. Bargain.
Devils Ridge block 4 Cabernet Merlot 2011 - $10, Kemenys
Margaret River Cabernet Merlot at this price? Don't know how
they do it
Annie’s Lane Cabernet Merlot or Shiraz 2010/11 – look for specials around $10
The Cab Merlot is a voluptuous beauty to enjoy in the near future
Even at its RR of $15, this is good value. Fruit-driven, soft and lovely
De Bortoli Deen Vat 8 Shiraz 2009 /Vat 9 Cabernet 2008 –$10.45, Dan M
These are big, ripe, soft wines (14.5%), well-made, well-rounded and generous
St Hallett's Gamekeeper's Barossa Shiraz 2010 - $10, Kemenys
Always reliable red, elegant rather than robust, great vintage, great value
Kingston Estate Cabernet Sauvignon 2011 – Dan M, $10.45
Limestone Coast and and Mount Benson fruit. Smooth Cabernet with a ton of flavour
Leasingham Bin 8 KS Riesling 2008 - $8, Dan M's, $10 at Winestar
This is made in the old Leo Buring Spaetlese style, and remarkbale value
De Bortoli Vat 5 Botrytis Semillon - $10.45 at Dan M's for 375ml
Not complex but a lovely sticky. 7 trophies. My best value wine of 2012