What you need to know about Shiraz
Where does it come from?
Origins of this grape were unknown and many legends gave Shiraz’s origin Iran, Italy (Siracusa), Greece, Syria. But in the end of the 90’s, genetically research was conducted to find its origin, Shiraz come from two French grapes, Mondeuse Blanche (from Savoie) and Dureza (from north of Ardeche).
A Great increase for this grape
Shiraz is the second most improved grape in term of production, before Tempranillo. It became the fourth most produced grape if only red grapes are counted.
Shiraz is produced in many regions. In France this black grape is produced in the Northern-Rhône Valley in four departments (Loire, Rhône, Ardèche, Drôme) with famous AOC (Appellation of Origin Controlled) on the edges of Rhône. From North to South you find Côte-Rôtie, Saint-Joseph, Hermitage, Crozes-Hermitage, Cornas. Only Shiraz is produced, except for Saint-Joseph where you may find 10% of white grapes.
In the Southern-Rhône Valley, because of the warmer climate, less windy, wines are much stronger, then to compensate wine-makers assemble Shiraz with Grenache that brings balance, softness.
In the new world a lot of Shiraz, in Southern-West Australia, Chili, South-Africa is produced, and it is increasing each year as the demand is following. France with 37%, Spain with 11% and Australia with 23% share approximatively 70% of the overall production. This globalized production is enjoyable for consumers because it means that a Shiraz from South-Africa is unlikely smelling French Shiraz.
How do you recognize Shiraz and how do you drink it?
To distinguish wines, it is important to take into account 3 major components. The structure, the grape(s), the terroir. The wine structure is a mix between acidity, tannins, alcohol where each grape deliver a different structure, the terroir is the mix between climate, soil, savoir-faire that gives you complexity and magnify wine.
This wine structure is full-bodied and really fruity, acidity is quite low, tannins strong and alcohol as well. The scent depends on the climate, from cold to hot you may find violet, red plums, blueberry, blackberry. The wine is also different according to his age, from young to old you may find red fruits, black fruits, violet, mineral (graphite, china ink), spices (liqueur, pepper, resin), noble (leather, truffle). The taste of wine is also linked to barrels, then you may find flavors of chocolate, tobacco.
It is advised to drink Shiraz with braised rumsteak, roasted quail, leg of lamb.
I hope you enjoyed this article, find the best Shiraz on our website and don't hesitate to plan a Shiraz Tasting, every vote count ! See you around Wine Lovers