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Brokenwood Wines
27 September 2023 | Vineyard, Wine Pairing, Winemaking | Brokenwood Wines

What’s the Best Expensive Red Wine in Australia?

Drinking a glass of expensive red wine at Brokenwood Wines

A waft of red fruit on the nose, a hint of lifted red berry, a palate boasting rich dark fruits and those long, fine tannins that linger exquisitely after every sip. This kind of description can only be speaking about one thing: premium red wines.

But there’s a wide scope when it comes to red wine (or any wine, for that matter). How can you distinguish between a nice yet ‘day-to-day’ red wine and a truly spectacular expensive red wine? Well, aside from the price tag, that is. But we don’t want you to rely solely on a label. We want to equip you with the information needed to tell these premium wines apart for yourself.

If you’re a red wine lover, or if perhaps you’re looking for a gift for a red wine connoisseur, you’ve come to the right place. Here, we explore several of the most expensive red wine varieties crafted by Brokenwood, and how to make your own choice about which is the best premium red wine for your unique palate preferences.

Exploring the World of Expensive Red Wine

There's an allure and fascination surrounding expensive red wine. These wines go beyond the ordinary and offer an elevated experience that captivates the senses. But what exactly distinguishes an 'expensive' or premium red wine from a standard one?

It's a combination of factors, including the exceptional quality of grapes, meticulous winemaking techniques, and the influence of terroir. These elements come together to create wines that are truly remarkable and worth savouring.

The Quality of the Grapes

First and foremost, the exceptional quality of grapes is crucial. In the world of expensive red wines, only the finest grapes make the cut. These grapes are meticulously selected, often sourced from vineyards with ideal terroir and optimal growing conditions.

The attention to detail in the vineyard, such as careful pruning, crop thinning, and precise harvesting, ensures that only the best fruit is used for crafting these exceptional wines.

Artful Winemaking Techniques

Equally important are the meticulous winemaking techniques employed by skilled artisans. From the gentle handling of the grapes during the crushing process to the precise control of fermentation and extended maceration, every step is executed with utmost care.

Premium red wines often undergo oak ageing, imparting complex flavours, nuances, and a refined structure. This patient, deliberate approach to winemaking allows the wine to evolve gracefully over time, unlocking its full potential and enhancing its distinctive character.

Considering the Wine Region

The influence of terroir, the unique combination of soil, climate, and geographical factors, plays a significant role in shaping the flavour profile and overall quality of expensive red wines.

Different regions offer distinct terroirs that lend their own character and personality to the wines produced there. Whether it's the sun-drenched vineyards of Tuscany or the cool-climate slopes of the Adelaide Hills, terroir adds an extra layer of complexity and depth to these remarkable expensive red wines.

Red Wine Varieties and Australia’s Reputation

Australia has garnered a well-deserved reputation for producing outstanding red wines that captivate wine lovers worldwide. Our vast and diverse land offers a myriad of microclimates and terroirs, each providing a unique canvas for winemakers to craft exceptional wines. The richness and diversity of Australian red wines are a testament to the ingenuity and expertise of our winemaking heritage.


Australia's most iconic red grape variety, Shiraz is known for its bold and powerful expression. With its deep, ripe fruit flavours, hints of spice, and velvety tannins, Australian Shiraz has become a symbol of our winemaking prowess. From the sun-drenched vineyards of the Barossa Valley to the cooler climates of the Yarra Valley, Shiraz thrives and exhibits a range of styles, each capturing the essence of its terroir.

Cabernet Sauvignon

Cabernet Sauvignon, another revered variety, showcases the elegant and refined side of Australian red wines. With its structured tannins, cassis and blackcurrant flavours, and remarkable ageing potential, Cabernet Sauvignon from regions like Coonawarra and Margaret River has garnered international acclaim. These wines exemplify the art of balance and complexity, beautifully representing the unique characteristics of their respective terroirs.

More Australian Red Wine Winners

Beyond Shiraz and Cabernet Sauvignon, Australia boasts an array of red grape varieties that thrive in our diverse climates. From the juicy and vibrant Grenache to the earthy and complex Pinot Noir, each variety finds its place in Australia's winemaking tapestry. Whether it's the cool-climate elegance of the Adelaide Hills or the robust richness of the McLaren Vale, Australian red wines showcase a kaleidoscope of flavours, textures, and expressions that continue to surprise and delight.

Red Wine, Brokenwood Style

Our winemakers, armed with a deep understanding of our diverse terroirs, have harnessed the full potential of these grape varieties, crafting wines that consistently impress and exceed expectations. Their commitment to quality, innovation, and sustainable practices ensures that Australia remains at the forefront of the global wine stage, enticing wine enthusiasts with our exceptional red wines that bear the mark of our unique land.

At Brokenwood, we take pride in showcasing the best of Australian red wines. Our collection of premium red wines, including our renowned Graveyard Vineyard Shiraz and HBA Shiraz, represent the pinnacle of our winemaking excellence. We invite you to explore the world of expensive red wines and indulge in the pleasure of experiencing the artistry and sophistication that these remarkable wines have to offer.

2021 Graveyard Vineyard Shiraz

Unveiling the Best Expensive Red Wines

Let's turn our attention to the crème de la crème of our red wine selection at Brokenwood. These high-end wines exemplify the pinnacle of our craftsmanship, and each bottle is a testament to our unwavering dedication to quality. 

Despite the premium and almost pure nature of these most expensive red wine releases, every drop still imbues that tantalising note of fun that sets Brokenwood apart. We know you want the premium bottle, but we also understand that a little excitement can elevate even the oldest of aged wines.

Here are a few of our most esteemed offerings that have garnered attention among enthusiasts and collectors alike.

2021 Graveyard Vineyard Shiraz

It’s our flagship wine for a reason, but this vintage is extra special. The 2021 Graveyard Vineyard Shiraz is the 34th release in this acclaimed red wine line, and after no release in 2020, this vintage had the weight of the Hunter resting on its shoulders.

After enduring four dry years, the firm La Nina cycle brought a wet season, bringing much-needed relief. We received an incredible 1030mm of rainfall in 2020, with Pokolbin reaching its annual quota by October. This made it a challenging year, with the prospect of not picking whites or reds becoming a real possibility. Fortunately, the sun emerged, and we harvested the fine, fragrant Shiraz grapes from the old vines of Graveyard on February 20th. The winemaking process was infused with a fine balance of passion and attention to detail, resulting in a truly remarkable wine.

This wine's vibrant colour is enhanced by rich purple hues. With the perfect balance of large-format French oak, the flavours of red spice and bramble fruit typical in Hunter Valley Shiraz truly shine. The supple palate flows seamlessly from start to finish, supported by underlying acidity and fine, long tannins. This classic medium-weight Hunter Valley Shiraz is a wine that will only improve with time, making it a true collector’s gem and one of the most expensive red wines Australia-wide.

2011 HBA Shiraz

The inspiration for our 2011 HBA Shiraz traces back to the golden era of Australian winemaking in the 1940s, 1950s, and 1960s. Renowned master winemakers O'Shea, Preece, and Haselgrove understood the unique character offered by different regions. It’s this rich legacy that inspired our HBA blend, a rewarding fusion of outstanding vintages from both regions.

The impressive depth of colour in this 12-year-old red wine treasure showcases aged brick-red hues, while the nose reveals intriguing secondary characters of iodine, sweet earthiness, and dark chocolate, complemented by French Oak. On the palate, you'll experience a fine, medium to full-bodied texture with notes of Christmas cake and a long core of fruit. The seamless integration of oak adds depth, leading to a satisfying, lingering finish. This is the perfect example of an aged Australian Shiraz, and a truly exceptional expensive red wine in Australia.

2020 Wildwood Road Cabernet Sauvignon

Our history of including Margaret River Cabernet Sauvignon in our blends dates back to the very first Brokenwood blend in 1983. One particular area that captures the essence of this renowned region is Wildwood Road, connecting the coastal Caves Road at Yallingup to the inland Carbunup. This picturesque stretch is home to a collection of exceptional vineyards, which produces some of the most expensive red wine varietals in Australia. One of which, of course, is our 2020 Wildwood Road Cabernet Sauvignon.

In the most recent vintage, we experienced a cooler-than-average spring, followed by a mild summer. These ideal weather conditions allowed for a longer ripening period, resulting in the production of outstanding Cabernet Sauvignon grapes. The extended ripening time allowed the flavours to fully develop, creating a wine that exemplifies the excellence of the Margaret River region.

Enticing aromas of lifted blue fruit and cassis mingle with a touch of dusty oak. As you take your first sip, you'll be greeted by a full-bodied Cabernet Sauvignon that showcases sage notes and fine tannins. The interplay between the luscious fruit and subtle oak adds depth and complexity to the palate.

This Cabernet Sauvignon is a true delight, with its lovely acidity that enlivens the senses and a finish that lingers with hints of cedar. It's a wine that promises to age gracefully, evolving and developing even more character over the years.

The Art of Appreciating Expensive Red Wine

To fully appreciate the nuances and complexities of expensive red wines, it's important to savour them with intention. Decanting the wine allows it to breathe, revealing its hidden depths. Choosing the right glassware enhances the aromas and flavours, elevating your tasting experience. And don't forget the joy of pairing these exceptional wines with fine cuisine, enhancing the flavours and creating a symphony of taste sensations.

Making Your Choice: What’s the Best Expensive Red Wine for You?

When it comes to choosing the best expensive red wine, it ultimately comes down to personal preference. Each wine has its own unique qualities and characteristics that make it special. At Brokenwood, we invite you to explore our range of high-end red wines and embark on your own journey of discovery. Let your taste buds guide you as you find the wine that resonates with your senses and brings you the utmost pleasure.

Group dining at Brokenwood Wines’ Cellar Door

Pamper Your Palate with Brokenwood Red Wines

As you dive into the world of expensive red wine, we invite you to join us in celebrating the perfect balance between fun and refinement. Explore the craftsmanship, passion, and dedication that go into creating these exceptional wines by browsing our red wines online, or by visiting our Cellar Door to immerse yourself in exceptional red wine culture.

Whether you choose to savour our Graveyard Vineyard Shiraz, indulge in our HBA Shiraz, or discover another gem from our collection, let Brokenwood be your companion in the pursuit of extraordinary wine experiences.


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