The annual Halliday Wine Companion is regarded as the definitive guide to wines and wineries in Australia, highlighting the best of the best from the wine industry.
This year, the tasting team sampled 8,500 wines over 3,500 wineries in an annual tradition that’s spanned 30 years. Each wine is marked out of 100 points with wines scoring between 99 and 95 considered exceptional (99-97) or outstanding (96-95) and labelled as GOLD medal standard. A wine scoring 94 points is labelled as Silver, however noted as being ‘on the cusp of gold medal status’, followed by wines scoring 93-90 as Silver highly recommended.
For 2024, 11 of our Australian wines have been labelled as Gold medal standard, and our St Hugo Winery maintained its Red Star rating as an ‘outstanding winery that regularly produces wines of exemplary quality and typicity’.
Some of our favourites for 2024 include:
2018 St Hugo Single Vineyard Koch Barossa Valley Shiraz – GOLD – 96 Points
“Sourced from a 1921-planted single vineyard on the banks of Jacob’s Creek in Rowland Flat. Deep crimson with intense chocolatey blackberry and black cherry fruits cut with hints of baking spices, graphite, pressed flowers, cedar and crushed stone. Excellent concentration with stunning fruit density and balance throughout its length, the chalky cut of chocolate tannins providing gentle support and finishing long with a sweep of spice, cassis and kirsch. Superb stuff” Dave Brooks.
2022 Orlando Steingarten Riesling – GOLD – 96 Points
“When I lived in the Eden Valley, one of my favourite things to do was drive my ute up to the viewing platform next to the 1962-planted Steingarten vineyard, set up my barbecue, drink beer and watch the sunset. It’s a pretty special site: east facing, clos-like and one with a track record of serious wines. The ’22 shows the site at its rapier-like finest. A picture of fruit purity, velocity and precision, pure and limey with a crushed quartz backbone and a crystalline line of acidity zipping things along. Great drinking now, but it will age beautifully” Dave Brooks.
2022 St Hugo Eden Valley Riesling – GOLD – 95 Points
“An impressive follow-up to the stellar ’21 vintage with classic characters of freshly squeezed lime, crushed quartz and Christmas lily immediately on display. Hints of bath salts and orange blossom flitter further in the background and I love the way this wine coils, the tension between fruit and acidity clearly evident, before it sizzles across the palate showing great drive and just a hint of phenolic texture, finishing dry, minerally true and with an ache of umami” Dave Brooks.
2018 St Hugo Vetus Purum Coonawarra Cabernet Sauvignon – GOLD – 95 Points
“Matured in 70% new French oak for 18 months. Elegant cabernet with blackcurrant and tobacco as the main drivers, though with smoked cedar and mint notes rippling through. Everything about this wine feels calm and confident as if it’s in no real hurry to impress. It has length, complexity and charm all on its side” Campbell Mattinson.
2019 St Hugo Single Vineyard Flint Coonawarra Cabernet Sauvignon – GOLD – 95 Points
“It’s not necessarily a big wine but it has that extra kick of flavour through the finish. It will age like a champion. It offers blackcurrant, black olives, boysenberry and mint flavours with a smooth, creamy vanillin aspect to the texture. Dry tobacco characters add top notes but it’s the slow, rolling churn of tannin through the flavour-laden finish that defines and distinguishes” Campbell Mattinson.
2019 St Hugo Single Vineyard Fabal Barossa Valley Shiraz – GOLD – 95 Points
“Fruit sourced from the Fabal vineyard in the northwest of the Barossa Valley. It sits true to its northern roots with dense blackberry, black cherry and dark plum fruits that have a real flexing, inky tension to their form. Layers of baking spices, licorice, cedar, crÃ¨me de cassis, earth, roasted nuts, vanillin oak and brandied fruits. There is a firmness and sinewy shape to the tannins, begging for time in the cellar and with that, you should be in for quite a treat indeed” Dave Brooks.
2016 St Hugo Single Vineyard Southern Valley Shiraz – GOLD 95 Points
“I have a sneaking suspicion that this release, from the excellent 2016 vintage, will keep on truckin’ in the cellar for many years. That’s not to say its lush red and dark berry and plum fruits aren’t delicious now â€“ all flecked with cedar and oak spice, violets and chocolate, they make an alluring package. But that granitic tannin structure is built for the long haul and I’d love to see this wine in a decade” Dave Brooks.
Orlando 2020 Lawson’s Padthaway Shiraz – GOLD – 95 Points
“Matured in 90% new American oak, the remainder in used French. Grown on a single 1968-planted vineyard. Vanillin oak hits you straight up but the power of the fruit behind it is impressive. There’s a grain to this wine, a patter of pink peppercorns in among the wealth of plum-drenched fruit, an impression that serious claims on quality are being made. Given the power here, and the persistence, and the balance, it’s easy to be swept along by it all” Campbell Mattinson.
2022 Jacob’s Creek Survivor Vine Barossa Riesling – 94 Points
“Riesling sourced from 1922 plantings. Pale in the glass with lifted aromas of freshly squeezed lime, Bickford’s lime cordial and grapefruit with hints of orange blossom, crushed river stone, white flowers, almond paste and bath salts. Dry, fruit-pure and displaying a lovely sense of composure with a bright mineral line and an expressive, limey finish” Dave Brookes.
2021 Jacob’s Creek Survivor Vine Barossa Shiraz – 94 Points
“Shiraz sourced from a single patch of survivor vines planted in 1921 on the banks of Jacob’s Creek. There is a plush magenta edge to this wine’s colour, which hints at the plushness of the fruit within the glass, super-ripe plum, blueberry and mulberry mesh with hints of baking spices, licorice, dark and milk chocolate and purple floral tones. Oak makes its presence known a bit more on the palate, with cedar and vanilla notes flowing in, tannins ripe and dense and a distinct berry cream aspect to the finish. A very polished wine” Dave Brookes.
You can find most of these wines available to purchase online at www.vntnr.co/