Australian Iconic Varietals


Chardonnay came to Australia in the 1920s, becoming popular during the 1970s, and by 1990 was one of the most widely planted white wine grapes. Australia now boosts total plantings of 25,400 hectares (2012) of Chardonnay.

Planted in most Australian wine regions, there is a wide variety of styles including light-bodied, un-oaked and crisp styles, to full-bodied and complex, barrel-matured styles.

Since the 1990s the style have largely swung in favor of lighter, paler Chardonnays with notes of white peaches and nectarines, from the deep golden, butterscotch style of the 1980s.


Shiraz was one of the original varieties brought to Australia by James Busby, a European immigrant, in 1832. Today it is Australia’s most popular and successful red grape with total plantings of about 42,000 hectares in 2012. Some vineyards throughout Australia continue to grow Shiraz vines that are over 100 years old.

Shiraz grapes are grown is almost every region in Australia, which produce various styles. There are the cooler climate, medium-bodied and spicy styles and more full-bodied, richly flavored and textured warmer climate variations.

What are Iconic Varietals?

Classic wine varietals from renowned winemaking regions

Put simply, varietal wines are made primarily from a specific wine grape. Individual varietals typically share signature characteristics, and it has become increasingly common for high-quality wines to be named by their varietal.

Well-known examples of classic wine varietals include Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, Riesling, Merlot, Shiraz, and Pinot Noir, to name a few.

By employing their expertise and experience, the team at DCW International have researched and explored the most prestigious wine regions of the world, and selected the highest-quality iconic varietals those regions have to offer, to bring home to Canadian wine lovers.

The process for selecting our iconic varietals involves researching the history and terroir of each region to determine which varieties grow best and produce the high-quality wines.

Australia’s terroir and climate delivers outstanding Chardonnay and Shiraz, Germany is well-known for its succulent Rieslings, and Argentina is producing mouthwatering Malbecs.

Other iconic world varietals include Pinot Grigio and Sangiovese of Italy, Californian Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon, Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Noir from New Zealand, and Chilean Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon.

More Iconic Varietals