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1982 vintage guide for Red Australia

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Some notable wines from Victoria; an exceptionally good year for Coonawarra Cabernet

Weather Conditions

Excellent winter rains in Australia’s south-east preceded a mild start to the summer, with things hotting up for a short time in January. The summer then continued mild and even across most of the major wine regions and also across the Nullarbor in Margaret River. The Hunter Valley found itself in the middle of a three-year drought.

Best Appellations

Significantly milder than usual, the season suited the cooler south-eastern regions of the Yarra Valley and Coonawarra, each of which made exceptional wines from the cabernet varieties by the standards of the day. Red wines from the Barossa and McLaren Vale were finer and more restrained than typical, although many winemakers rate this vintage highly. The late Indian summer also helped Margaret River Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot achieve excellent ripeness in cool and even conditions. The Hunters reds were generally firm and tough.

Best Producers

Some Yarra Valley reds like the Mount Mary and Yarra Yering Dry Red No. 1 survived in fine condition, while perhaps the best red of the vintage was the exceptional wine created by John Wade which became the first in the series of John Riddoch Cabernet Sauvignons from Wynns Coonawarra. Other fine Coonawarra Cabernets were made under the Orlando St Hugo and Leconfield labels. Fine central Victorian reds were made by Chateau Tahbilk, Passing Clouds and Redbank.

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