Best’s Shiraz takes the gold, so to speak

Had a wonderful blind tasting with some serious wine enthusiasts earlier in the week. The theme was “the best value wine under $50 available in Singapore” and there was quite a selection ranging from the mid $20 mark all the way up to $49.99.

The clear winner on the night was the Best’s shiraz from Great Western which pleases me no end because the rootstock for Bastard Box is the Best’s shiraz.

Thankfully, the wine is readily available at Le Vigne at S$44.50 shelf price, but 10% discount for payment by cheque or cash (no cards, no Nets) and it ends up at S$40.05.

2008/ Best’s / Bin No. 1 / Great Western / Shiraz / S$40.05 – Epicure (Ralph Kyte-Powell) agreed with the group’s ratings giving it 4.5 stars for the 2008. With a cellar door retail of A$25 and RRP of A$30, the pricing in Singapore looks spot on.

Great Western is a tiny little town (blink, and you’ll miss it – pop.644) in western Victoria on the main road between Melbourne and Adelaide, but its role in Australian wine history far exceeds its modest appearance. Joseph & Henry Best first planted vines here in 1865, a vineyard that was later sold to Hans Irvine in 1888 and then to Benno Seppelt in 1918. Great Western is synonymous with that great Australian wine icon and folly, sparkling shiraz. Best’s current Great Western vineyard was established in 1866.

And just to confuse matters, I think Great Western is now technically considered as part of The Grampians wine region.

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Wine quotations

"A good bottle of wine contains more philosophy than all the books in the world" - Louis Pasteur

“The unexacting palates of the masses…are content to ask no question [on origin] so long as a florin or half-a-crown will purchase a roomy flagon of strong , full-bodied, fruity wine” – CE Hawker writing in 1907

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