There has never been a better time to buy Australian wine. An explosion of producers and creativity, and a narrowing distance between winemaker and consumer has created the perfect storm.
Thanks to social media, winemakers can be more adventurous, and consumers aren't afraid to buy the same old thing. Crazy ideas hatched in the winery can actually have a life and new wines can go from winery to wine bar and pop up on Instagram all in a day.
Winemaker Simon Steele at Medhurst winery in the Yarra Valley says their Pinot Shiraz blend sells better than their Cabernet. Who'd have thunk it!
The takeaway from this Top 50 list of wines under $50 for 2016 is that many of them are emerging, relatively new names. This stands to reason when you consider emerging labels tempt customers with more competitive pricing. As well, more risks can be taken with smaller volume products, which is where the creativity happens.
There are many wines and producers that are unlucky not to be here, so look for new styles and emerging names to find value in your own wine hunting in 2017!
To keep things simple, we've broken the list down into categories:
These delicious drops are a combination of traditional method and "pétillant-naturel" wines. Making traditional sparkling is a longer and more intensive (read: more expensive) process than pét-nat wines, which is a new style to Australian shores.
So, give pét-nats a try – but keep an open mind because these low-fi wines are quite radical by comparison.
Kind of says it all, doesn't it? These are those classic drams you can comfortably say everyone will love.
The most exciting thing about wine is discovering new styles and new tastes. These are the more adventurous whites for people developing a risque palate might like to try with an open mind.
Obviously. This is the quintessential wine of Summer.
Year of the pinot
Such is the volume of quality Pinot Noirs, we could do a Top 50 list dedicated to it, but it is the emergence of Pinot Muniers, and blends of these varieties with other grapes, that symbolises the creativity and change right now.
New wave reds
Like the art movement in the '70s, these are best examples of emerging grape varieties that defy convention.
From Margaret River to McLaren Vale, Barossa to Beechworth, No serious wine lover is without at least one or two bottles of these.
'Tis the season…
Scroll through the gallery above to see the 50 top wines under $50 to stock up on.