YARRA VAL­LEY SCORES AWARD FOR OUR BEST SHI­RAZ

Herald Sun - - NEWS - AARON LANGMAID

RAISE a glass — an $80 bot­tle of red from the Yarra Val­ley has won one of the world’s most pres­ti­gious wine awards.

The Le­van­tine Hill Es­tate 2015 Syrah scooped the Aus­tralian Red Tro­phy at the In­ter­na­tional Wine Chal­lenge in Lon­don.

Notch­ing up 96 points and gold medal sta­tus, judges de­clared it the best shi­raz in Aus­tralia, beat­ing all other wine cat­e­gories from around the na­tion, in­clud­ing pinots and caber­net sauvi­gnons.

Wine­maker Paul Bridge­man said the hard work had paid off.

“It’s cer­tainly been through no lack of ef­fort or ex­pense try­ing to get to where we are,’’ Mr Bridge­man said. “We are a rel­a­tively new face in game but bring lot of history and be­lief in the re­gion.’’

A re­gion bet­ter known for caber­net sav­i­gnon and more re­cently pinot and chardon­nay, Mr Bridge­man said the award could help show­case the po­ten­tial for Yarra Val­ley shi­raz.

Ac­cord­ing to its cre­ators, the Syrah boasts brood­ing flavours of sumac and car­away, dark berry and cho­co­late.

“It re­ally does jus­tice to this wine­grow­ing re­gion,’’ Mr Bridge­man said. “It has a re­strained ele­gant per­fume that re­ally creeps up on you.’’

This year’s In­ter­na­tional Wine Chal­lenge re­ceived en­tries from 52 coun­tries.

Wine­maker Paul Bridge­man and his dog, Archie, in­spect the win­ning wine. Pic­ture: JAKE NOWAKOWSKI

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