Two cool climate Shirazes from South Australia have been awarded Asian food and wine pairing trophies in the first round of results from the Cathay Pacific Hong Kong International Wine and Spirit Competition.
Adelaide Hills winery Bird in Hand was awarded Best Wine with Cantonese Braised Brisket for its 2013 Nest Egg Shiraz. Eden Valley producer Eden Hall won Best Wine with Wagyu Beef for its 2015 Springton Shiraz.
Eden Hall General Manager Graeme Thredgold said he hoped the win would help the small winery secure a distributor so it could ramp up exports to Asia.
He said 2015 was the best vintage at the winery in “probably a decade”.
“It’s just a great food wine – soft, delicate with lovely silky tannins,” Thredgold said of the winning Shiraz.
“Hong Kong and China are absolute key markets for us, there’s not a lot of opportunities in Australia for an independent brand so we need to be diversifying and finding export opportunities for the brand to be sustainable in the future.”
Eden Hall’s Springton Shiraz sells in Australia for about AU$25 while Bird in Hand’s flagship Nest Egg Shiraz retails for AU$99.
Bird in Hand Winemaker Jared Stringer said the award showed the versatility of the Adelaide Hills region for growing Shiraz.
He said the use of 100 per cent French oak barrels at Bird in Hand also helped to maintain the subtleties of the region’s Shiraz grapes
“Over the last 20 years we’ve been homing in on very specific sites to grow some of the best cool climate Shiraz in the Adelaide Hills,” Stringer said.
“It’s a bit more subtle than Shiraz from the Barossa Valley or McLaren Vale. Ours is more perfumed and that prettier style lends itself to dishes that are as delicate as Cantonese Braised Brisket.”
Bird in Hand has also been short listed at the London International Wine and Spirit Competition as one of the top five Australian wine producers following trophy wins at the competition with its Chardonnay and Montepulciano.