2015 Thorn-Clarke Terra Barossa Shiraz, $15.99

Somewhat against the grain here at the Wine Shop, I like Australian wines. Oenological wisdom says vines should suffer a bit to make good wine. If that's the case, Australia is almost too good for grapes, South Australia anyway. You see, South Australia gets really good summer heat days, then at night, cooling winds come up from Antarctica.


These day/night shifts just get grapes rolling over and kicking up their feet for a belly scratch. They love it. The result is way ripe grapes with juicy fruit profiles, and often higher than French alcohol, i.e. big expressive wines. Not for every dish, but really grand with red meat and that new white meat, kangaroo. This offering, from the sixth generation at Thorn-Clarke, and from the family's estate vineyards, is chocked full of dark berry fruits, coffee, mocha, and just a touch of mint—creamy chocolate-chip-mint ice cream type of mint. It is a mouthful and a great pairing with the lamb burgers we had. Lamb burgers tossed with diced dried cranberries, topped with goat cheese. Fire up the barbie!