Celebrating the best of Australian fine wine and food

Australia's Wine List of the Year Awards
5 minutes

Australia's Wine List of the Year Awards, presented in partnership with Gourmet Traveller WINE and the drinks association, celebrates the quality and diversity of Australian food and fine wine. Wine Australia is proud to support these prestigious annual awards by sponsoring the Best Listing of Australian Wines and the Best Listing of NSW, SA, TAS, VIC and WA wines. The awards were established in 1994 to recognise and reward Australia’s best wine lists and the individuals and establishments behind them.

What makes an exceptional listing of Australian wines? The best Australian wine lists place local wines in an international context. These lists showcase our finest varieties grown across a range of our diverse Australian wine regions. They delve into the history of Australian wine by exploring the classics and present wines that helped build Australia’s global reputation as a premium wine producer. However, only highlighting the classics wouldn’t truly showcase the breadth and depth of Australian wine today – an exceptional listing of Australian wines must capture the sense of innovation that is driving a revolution in our winemaking and wine styles. Combining the history, evolution and revolution of Australian wine in a list may seem like a daunting task, but many of our top sommeliers have been able to achieve this in exciting and unique ways.

In 2017 the award for the Best Listing of Australian Wine went to one of Australia’s fine dining institutions Café Sydney. Over the past 17 years the restaurant has built a reputation for spectacular food and wine to match the inimitable views from their location atop the iconic Customs House in Circular Quay. Their wine list deftly covers the history, evolution and revolution of Australian wine. Iconic Shiraz from Penfolds and Rockfords to Cabernet Sauvignon from classic Margaret River producers like Moss Wood and Leeuwin Estate. Cool climate Chardonnay from Yabby Lake and Mount Mary in the Yarra Valley to expressive Pinot Noir from Bass Phillip and Tolpuddle Vineyard. Boundary pushing Pinot Meunier from Mac Forbes to exciting emerging varietals like Mencia from La Linea in the Adelaide Hills. This is a wine list that truly represents the breadth and depth of the Australian wine community, a truly deserving winner of the Best Listing of Australian Wine Award.

2017 Australia's Wine List of the Year Award Winners

Category

2017 Winner

Finalist

Finalist

Best Listing of Australian Wines 

Cafe Sydney

Muse

Aria (Sydney)

Best Listing of ACT Wines

Aubergine

Rubicon

Piagillo Estate

Best Listing of NSW Wines

Biota Dining

Charred Kitchen

Bridge Bar

Best Listing of Queensland Wines

Aria, Brisbane

Blackbird

Ochre

Best Listing of South Australian Wines

Hardy's Verandah

Apothecary 1878

fermentAsian

Best Listing of Tasmanian Wines

The Source at MONA

Stillwater

Me Wah, Hobart

Best Listing of Victorian Wines

Lake House

Royal Mail

Provenance & Source Dining

Best Listing of Western Australian Wines

Settlers Tavern

Frasers

Rockpool Bar & Grill, Perth

The award winners

Aubergine, Canberra, ACT

Aubergine has been a beacon of fine dining in Canberra for many years. Chef Ben Willis and his wife Andrea took the reins in 2008 and have taken the restaurant to another level. In the kitchen, Ben and the team work closely with local farmers, producers and artisans to showcase the best the region has to offer on the plate. This philosophy translates to the wine list, with an exceptional list of local wines from the Canberra District shown within a national and international context.

Biota Dining, Bowral, NSW

Biota Dining and chef James Viles have been a huge influence in Australian fine dining in recent years. His focus on sourcing exceptional local produce helped to spark a revolution in Australian dining with chefs focusing on what is available in their own backyards, sometimes literally! Since opening Biota Dining has been a champion for wines from across New South Wales, and this year’s award-winning list is no exception.

Aria, Brisbane, Queensland

Matt Moran is one of Australia’s great chefs. His Aria restaurants in Sydney and Brisbane are the pinnacle of his culinary creativity. The restaurants have an impeccable reputation for promoting fine Australian wine, with Aria Brisbane winning the Best Listing of Australian Wines category in 2014. This year they’ve been awarded for their tremendous showcase of Queensland wines, from classic styles to the emerging alternative varietals that are making noise at home and abroad.

Hardy’s Verandah, Adelaide Hills, South Australia

Mount Lofty House is one of the most historic properties in the Adelaide Hills, built in 1852 as the summer residence for Arthur Hardy. Hardy’s Verandah is a relative new addition to the South Australian fine dining scene but has made a heck of a lot of noise in a short space of time. From the food that celebrates the best of the Adelaide Hills to the wine list that celebrates the best of South Australia, Hardy’s Verandah has marked itself as one to watch now and into the future.

The Source at MONA, Hobart, Tasmania

MONA is one of the world’s most exciting and innovative modern art museums. The Source at MONA restaurant showcases exceptional Tasmanian food and wine in one of the most stunning fine dining spaces. Whether it’s classic Tasmanian Riesling and Chardonnay or cutting edge artisanal wines from the island’s emerging producers, The Source at MONA is the best of the region like few others.

Lake House, Daylesford, Victoria

The Lake House at Daylesford has inspired generations of Australian chefs and hospitality professionals with their seasonal food matched to a truly exceptional wine list. The award for Best Listing of Victorian Wines is just one of a myriad of deserved accolades for this institution. Capturing the flavours of Australia’s most diverse wine producing state is a challenge that the Lake House rises to every year.

Settlers Tavern, Margaret River, WA

Australian pubs aren’t normally known for their wine lists but the legendary Settlers Tavern is a delightful exception. The full gamut of wines of Western Australia are showcased in a national and international context, with a wonderful range of micro bottlings and ridiculously hard to find wines that you’ll struggle to find elsewhere.

The Awards judging process

The work of judging Australia’s Wine List of the Year Awards is led by Chairman of Judges, Peter Forrestal, and Deputy Chairs, Toni Paterson MW and Jeni Port. They assemble an extraordinary selection of Master Sommeliers and Masters of Wine together with additional expert sommeliers, wine judges and wine and food writers from Australia and around the World to ensure the Awards are judged to an exceptionally high standard.

What do the Judges look for?

Content

  • Quality is key to the selection of wines
  • Having an original & innovative selection, with some mature wines from good vintages, avoiding poor vintages
  • Carefully matching varieties and regions
  • Having an appropriate variety of wines by the glass
  • Adequate list of aperitifs, beers, spirits, liqueurs and waters/non-alcoholic beverages

Balance

  • Balance of pricing relevant to your establishment
  • Domestic & imported wines, regions and wine styles

Suitability

  • To cuisine, style and image of establishment

Presentation

  • Includes vintages
  • Accurate and consistent presentation of information
  • Clear design for easy navigation

Pricing

  • Appropriateness, value

Disclaimer

This information is presented in good faith and on the basis that Wine Australia, nor their agents or employees, are liable (whether by reason of error, omission, negligence, lack of care or otherwise) to any person for any damage or loss whatsoever which has occurred or may occur in relation to that person taking or not taking (as the case may be) action in respect of any statement, information or advice given via this channel.


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