Announcing – The Great Australian Red Dinner
Zig Zag Building, 74 Victoria St, London SW1E 6SQ
Tuesday 11th June 2019
18.30 – 22.00
£120 per head – four-course dinner and accompanying award-winning TGAR wines
This is the insanely awesome line-up of wines which we will bring to dinner!
2006, 2010 and 2014 Jim Barry PB Reserve Shiraz Cabernet Sauvignon; 2006 2016 Kaesler Wines WOMS; 2004, 2012 and 2016 Lake Breeze Bernoota Shiraz Cabernet; 2002, 2009 and 2014 Majella Wines The Malleea; 2016 Penfolds Bin 389 Cabernet Shiraz; 2016 Penfolds Koonunga Hill Seventy-Six Shiraz Cabernet Sauvignon; 2014 and 2016 Salomon Estate Norwood Shiraz Cabernet; 2014 2016 Tahbilk Old Vine Cabernet Shiraz; 2016 2012 and 2013 Wolf Blass Black Label Cabernet Shiraz; 2009 Wolf Blass Grey Label Cabernet Shiraz; 2013 Yalumba The Caley; 2014 Yalumba The Signature; 2015 St Hugo Cabernet Shiraz; 2012 St Hugo Private Collection Shiraz Cabernet.
click for tickets here – The Great Australian Red Dinner at M Restaurant
Tyson Stelzer and Matthew Jukes will present a dinner at M Victoria with previous Gold Medal and Trophy winning wines from their The Great Australian Red competition. This will be an unmissable event. If you attended any of Matthew’s Mature Australian Wine Dinners in the autumn of last year you will be familiar with the format – four courses, exceptional wines, great fun, awesome conversation and the one and only time that this event has ever happened anywhere in the world!
Inspiration for TGAR
In 2004, I had dinner with the late Len Evans, one of the most important figures in the history of the Australian wine trade. I asked him why almost all of the great, mature Australian red wines that I had drunk with winemakers were made from blends of Cabernet Sauvignon and Shiraz and yet this style of wine was rarely made these days. I told him that I felt that they were the unique wines of Australia and that they were truly world class. After a very long chat, I decided to create an annual competition to celebrate this blend called The Great Australian Red. My great friend and fellow wine writer Tyson Stelzer and I kicked this competition off in 2006 and after it we held a dinner, inviting some of the most important luminaries in the business. We have never looked back. Here is a quote from Len Evans taken from that evening.
‘Great work you are doing, and carry on the great work. Push this idea, because I still think in my heart that when you get the best of Cabernet and the best of Shiraz – not the second, third or fourth cab off the rank – you can blend beautifully. This competition certainly is something that I am very supportive of. I think it is wonderful that you are doing this.’
Len Evans, AO, OBE at The Inaugural The Great Australian Red Judges’ Dinner, 24 July 2006
The Cabernet Shiraz blend is an Australian institution. This country championed it, refined it and still does it better than anyone else on the planet. Cabernet Shiraz is Australia’s national treasure of the red wine world, and it deserves to be recognised and celebrated as Australia’s greatest red. The history of the Australian wine industry is hinged on one wine style. It’s not Penfolds Grange. This is a wine far more unique, far more definitively Australian; indeed, more highly regarded even than Grange. Cabernet Shiraz is The Great Australian Red. First championed in Australia in the late 1800s as generic “claret”, the blend of Cabernet and Shiraz was resurrected in the 1950s. By 1962, Max Schubert, the creator of Penfolds Grange, had made what he himself named the best wine of his illustrious career. A blend of Coonawarra Cabernet and Barossa Shiraz, 1962 Penfolds Bin 60A is now Penfolds’ most successful show wine of all time and has on countless occasions over a half-century been heralded as the greatest Australian red wine ever made. Over the ensuing decades, the direction of red winemaking in this country was changed forever by the profound impact of this wine and hundreds of others which shared a similar formula. Schubert and his contemporaries were convinced of the potential of Cabernet, both on its own and as a blending partner for Shiraz. By the mid-1970s, the blend was rife across the landscape of the Australian wine industry. That was forty years ago, a long way from the frenetic pace of the industry today. Australia now churns out tens of thousands of labels every year. How many of these represent blends of Cabernet and Shiraz? A few hundred, if that. If many of the greatest wines that this country has ever produced are Cabernet Shiraz blends, why don’t we see more of them made today? It seems that the blend has slipped out of the limelight, in the wake of the rise of Shiraz Viognier and an entourage of alternative red varietals. We have created The Great Australian Red to shift this focus back to Australia’s unique icon. The future of Australia’s wine industry depends on it just as much as has its past. Tapping into the strength of Australia’s history and framing it as the unique draw-card of the future, the Cabernet Shiraz blend is the secret weapon to take the Australian wine industry into its next era. The Great Australian Red is free of the constraints of region, price and style, drawing together great examples of all styles, at all price points, from every Australian state. The Great Australian Red is an innovative wine competition to encourage, identify and promote Cabernet Shiraz blends. Since its beginnings in 2006, this competition has put the Cabernet Shiraz blend back into the focus of Australia, and now, the world. It is our pleasure to bring the past winners of this competition to London for only the second time (the first time was a wine press only event) and for the very first time, we will be hosting a dinner in celebration of this iconic style of wine at M Restaurants.
UK comments on TGAR
“You are doing a great job of teaching us about Australia and how good Australian wine is.” Oz Clarke
“A brilliant experience to see the perspective of back vintages, an opportunity we never have here in the UK.” Steven Spurrier