Over the course of 2016 we’ve had the absolute pleasure of tasting many many many wines, spirits, beers and ciders. We’ve been able to recommend various cocktails, put together wine guides and pass on some advice on what beverages you could be consuming this year. It’s a tough job but we’re more than happy to take one for the team.


In 2016 we decided to award one bottle or one beverage with an award, we’re naming it Best Drop and in this case the award is going to a particular wine. The St Hugo Shiraz 2013 is the winner this year and it’s for a number of reasons. Firstly, let’s clear the air around cost. Some will say that the 100 point Penfolds Grange is a better wine, and it might be, but how many people can afford it? We want the Best Drop to be affordable so that you, dear reader, could go out and enjoy it also. Secondly, flavour. Like any beverage it needs to taste good. The Shiraz from St Hugo is the perfect example of a Barossa Valley wine. It is a rich, full flavoured wine with charry notes yet is well balanced with an excellent structure. When you consider the cost of this wine to the flavour you immediately start to nod, you realise you have bought a wine which will impress your guests and won’t break the bank. This wine pairs wonderfully with a good steak, roast beef, roasted vegetables and even your pepper sauce. You could drink it now or buy a bunch and cellar some for a number of years.


One of our favourite things about wine is that every year is subtly different, sometimes dramatically. Each harvest yields a certain amount of bottles for sale and in 2016 this vintage is available to us. The stark reality though is that over time this vintage will be impossible to find. The 2013 Shiraz that you shared with your family one day will not be repeated, that moment, that day, that flavour, will never be repeated. Spirits, beer and cider are consistent and repeatable. So enjoy the St Hugo Shiraz 2013, it won’t come by again, not exactly the same anyway.

The St. Hugo Shiraz 2013 is available at your local Dan Murphy’s etc for less than $40 or even less at CostCo.