Last updated: August 15, 2021

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Welcome to our big Shiraz wine test 2021. Here we present all the Shiraz wines we have tested in detail. We have compiled detailed background information and added a summary of customer reviews on the web.

We would like to make your purchase decision easier and help you decide whether a Shiraz wine is right for you.

You will also find answers to frequently asked questions in our guide. If available, we also offer interesting test videos. Furthermore, you will also find some important information on this page that you should definitely pay attention to if you want to buy Shiraz wine.




The most important facts

  • The grapes of the Shiraz wine are primarily known for their full aroma. The bouquet is characterised by strong nuances of currants and blackberries.
  • The Shiraz achieves its spicy heaviness through flavours of tobacco, coffee beans and leather. Therefore, it can be ideally combined with dark meat.
  • Good and suitable alternatives to Shiraz wine are the related grape varieties: Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec and Pinotage. Contrary to many misconceptions, Shiraz is not the same as Syrah wine.

Shiraz Test: The Ranking

Guide: Questions to ask yourself before buying a Shiraz wine

Is there a difference between Shiraz and Syrah wine?

Yes, definitely in terms of taste! The two wines are the same grape variety, but the regional processing and also the production differ. This has a great influence on the diverse and complex flavours of the wine.

The Shiraz grapes are very sensitive and only thrive under the best conditions (Source: unsplash.com / David Köhler)

Shiraz wine mostly comes from Australia. The resulting wine differs from Syrah in its full-bodiedness, which comes across as softer and milder.

Various regional factors such as the climate, the rainfall rate, the nutrients contained in the soil and also the various processing techniques of the winegrowers shape the flavours of the two grapes and make it unique.

The Syrah grape comes from France and not, as is often assumed, from what is now Iran. It produces rather elegant and heavy wines with soft tannins.

Researchers found out a long time ago that the grape variety of Shiraz and Syrah is a wild cross between the grapes Mondeuse Blanche and Dureza.

Even though it is the same cross, it is very exciting that it can produce two different wines with such different characteristics.

Who is Shiraz wine suitable for?

Shiraz is not suitable for everyone because of its strength. Therefore, it can be said that this noble and heavy wine is suitable for experienced wine drinkers.

The grapes of Shiraz wine are primarily known for their full aroma. The bouquet is characterised by strong nuances of currants and blackberries.

Sometimes a slight hint of cherry or raspberry can be added.

In addition to these rather sweet taste components, the Shiraz achieves its spicy heaviness through unique taste notes of tobacco, coffee beans and leather. If this appeals to you, you should definitely try it!

From which wine region does Shiraz wine originate?

Originally, Shiraz comes from the Rhone wine-growing region in France, where it is still very much cultivated today.

Origin Vineyard area
France 67,382 ha
Australia 42,675 ha
Spain 20,000 ha
Argentina 12,810 ha
South Africa 10,136 ha
USA 9,197 ha
Italy 6,739 ha
Chile 6,027 ha
Portugal 3,501 ha
Algeria 1,510 ha

Due to its popularity, however, it is now also cultivated in numerous other countries around the world. In total, there are over 184,834 hectares of vineyards for the Shiraz grape worldwide.

This makes it the fastest growing wine variety next to the "Tempranillo".

What are the alternatives to Shiraz wine?

If you like the taste of Shiraz, you certainly already have a very good foundation for tasting other suitable red wine varieties.

The 3 types of wine recommended below range from rather strong to weaker red wines and should definitely be tried:

Cabernet Sauvignon

This equally noble grape can be considered a very good fruity alternative for any Shiraz lover. The characteristic features of Cabernet Sauvignon make it a very popular wine, which is why it is also called the "king of red wines".

Depending on the region of production, the aromas and intensity can vary greatly, but they are often characterised by blackcurrant and cassis. Napa Valley and California are well-known wine regions for Cabernet Sauvignon. It is overall a little milder and more mellow than Shiraz wine.

Malbec

Last but not least, wine from the Malbec grape must be considered. Just like Syrah, it is one of the absolute "house wines" of many wine lovers worldwide and is therefore always ready to be enjoyed.

Just like Shiraz, Malbec has a strong bouquet of berries and a full body. The tannin values are also comparable. Although Malbec shares the same place of origin, France, many of the classics of this wine come from Argentina.

Pinotage

If you don't know Pinotage yet, it's high time you did. Native to South America, it has a surprising number of similarities to Shiraz, yet stands out with a complexity all its own.

The smoky tobacco note in particular is very typical and can extend to essences of bitter chocolate.

But don't be put off: it is also pleasantly sweet and, depending on the production method, reminiscent of plums. Compared to the Shiraz wine, it can be considered a stronger and heartier alternative.

Buying criteria: These are the factors you can use to compare and evaluate Shiraz wines

In this section we will show you in a simple way which aspects you can use to decide between the enormous variety of possible Shiraz wines.

The criteria that will help you compare the different wines include:

  • Vintage
  • Fairtrade
  • Shelf life

In the following paragraphs, we will explain to you exactly what is important in the individual criteria.

Vintage

The age of a wine is often less decisive for its quality than the vintage. The regional climate in a specific growing region is decisive for a successful grape harvest.

On the one hand, the climatic conditions have a great influence on the ripening period and thus also on the taste. On the other hand, Shiraz is considered a rather less productive grape variety and is dependent on a good climate.

Therefore, it also makes sense to use a blend of Shiraz, combining different vintages. This ensures a consistent quality.

Fairtrade

Shiraz is produced in many different wine-producing countries around the world, whereby the conditions for the vineyard and the winegrowers can differ drastically.

It is worthwhile to buy Fairtrade wine primarily for the following reasons:

  • Supporting small farms on a social and economic level
  • Environmental protection and the associated careful use of natural resources, which ultimately also has a lasting influence on the quality of the soil of the vines.

It can be concluded that by buying a wine with the Fairtrade seal, it is also possible to get hold of good exquisite wines from small farms.

The vineyards for Shiraz are huge and spread all over the world. To be able to enjoy your wine without hesitation, you should make sure that it has been produced fairly. (Source: unsplash.com / Katherine Chase)

In addition to this, the sustainability aspect also ensures that less pesticides are used and genetically modified grape varieties are discouraged.

Shelf life

What many people do not know is that not all wines are suitable for storage. In fact, only between 5 and 10 percent benefit from storage.

Shiraz is considered a storable grape variety for the following reasons:

  • Tannin content: The bitter substances in wine have a preserving effect. So the stronger and more intense a wine is, the longer it can be kept.
  • Age of the vine: The older the vines, the more storable the grapes.
  • Alcohol content: The rather higher alcohol content in the wine also has a preservative and antibacterial effect.
  • Bottle size: Shiraz is usually sold in large 0.7 litre bottles. The bigger the bottle, the better.

It is a simple rule of thumb : "The more tannin the wine contains, the more storable it is".

Interesting facts about Shiraz wine

What food does Shiraz pair well with?

With its noble character and complexity, Shiraz makes an excellent food pairing and can be considered as a successful complement to many food options.

Especially dishes with dark meat such as roast, lamb, venison or beef are perfect for perfecting with Shiraz wine.

Shiraz is a perfect companion for a wide range of dishes (Source: unsplash.com / Katherine Chase)

This is because the strength of the wine does not overpower these aromatic meats, but rather complements them with an additional flavour component.

How long can an open Shiraz be enjoyed?

The highest maximum duration is considered to be 7 days, but this depends on a number of factors. Many wine drinkers make the mistake of letting a wine sit for too long and it thus begins to spoil relatively quickly.

The spoilage of the wine is due to the oxygen in the bottle, which causes other chemical processes in addition to the normal oxidation. This can be counteracted with various tips:

  • Store in the fridge
  • Protect the wine from oxygen by closing the bottle airtight
  • The more that is left in the bottle, the longer the wine will keep. *
  • Using a gas pump, which forces the oxygen out of the bottle and replaces it with gas.

According to the contents of the bottle, the shelf life can be determined if it is stored in the refrigerator.

Bottle contents shelf life
3/4 contents 1 week
1/2 contents 4-5 days
1/4 contents 2 days

Storage plays a decisive role in shelf life and you should therefore find out which storage method is suitable for you.

Image source: unsplash.com / Louis Hansel

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