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Red Rhone Varietal under £10

And the winner is...

Bird In Hand, Two In The Bush Shiraz, Mt Lofty
Ranges, South Australia 2009 (14.5%)

Voluptuous and fleshy; mellow but upfront, with a
very strong personality. Mint, brown sugar,
blackcurrant, medicinal – exceptionally well made.
UK: £9.99; Gen, HPW, RWM, Tan
US: $15; USGMW

A small but select few were left standing in pursuit of this Trophy. All can claim a heritage in a hotbed of Syrah production, but it was this brilliant Australian entry which claimed top spot. Based at Woodside in the pretty countryside of the Adelaide Hills, Bird in Hand winery – named after a local goldmine that operated in the 1850s – is owned by the Nugent family, who planted the north-facing vineyards at 400m altitude in deep, red schist soil. Until fairly recently, South Australian Shiraz was almost exclusively the powerful preserve of the likes of Barossa Valley and McLaren Vale. Demand for a more elegant style of Shiraz, however, has catapulted Adelaide Hills, with its higher-altitude vineyards and cooler climate, to the fore.

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