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Australia the Big Winner in Decanter’s Star Buys of 2015

50 Star Buys of 2015

January 2016

From the thousands of wines tasted and rated by Decanter’s expert judges and writers over the past 12 months, we have picked out 50 of the highest-scoring bottles available in the UK. And with 14 of them under 20 pounds, there’s a host of affordable treats on the following pages to kickstart your seasonal festivities.

To celebrate the end of another year of great wines, three of our regular experts – Peter Richards MW, Sarah Jane Evans MW and Xaiver Rousset MS – have chosen Decanter’s 50 Star buys from the hundreds of wines rated Outstanding in 2015.

Every one scored 18.5/20 (95/100) points and above during the past 12 months and are all still commercially available, with the selection taken from our monthly panel tastings and Weekday Wine, as well as our recommendations from our writers that have been published in our feature articles and supplements. Our three experts retasted the wines blind (only the principal variety and vintage were known) and judged them totally on their own merits.

The tasting included lots of stylistic differences but our panel unanimously agreed on the final 50. The top 10 are highlighted on these first two pages with the others grouped by region.

The results provoked a few surprises, with white wines and Australia the stars. Rousset found the Australian whites very pure and precise with great minerality and balance. ‘The country’s wines have had a tough time, especially Chardonnay, often criticized as too extracted and over-oaked with high alcohol. Producers have reacted to that and it is paying off.’ Richards also praised Australia’s other popular varieties such as Riesling, Pinot Noir and Syrah for being ‘better and more elegant and diverse than ever before’.

Old Bridge Cellars’ Wines in the List:

2012 Leeuwin Estate Art Series Chardonnay, Margaret River, Western Australia
2009 Kilikanoon The Duke Grenache, Clare Valley, South Australia
2011 Poggiotondo Vigna delle Conchiglie Riserva, Chianti

Download the PDF of the article here