8 SEPTEMBER 2023
In celebration of the world’s most popular two grape varieties, last night, the highest-pointed Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon in Australia were crowned for the 2023 James Halliday Australian Chardonnay and Cabernet Challenge.
The Evans & Tate 2021 Redbrook Estate Chardonnay from Margaret River and the Forest Hill Vineyard 2022 Block 5 Cabernet Sauvignon from Great Southern were crowned trophy winners, both rated 97 points, from a total of 615 entries across 34 Australian wine regions.
Showcasing Australia’s outstanding regional diversity, the James Halliday Australian Chardonnay and Cabernet Challenge combines the two varieties to be judged simultaneously. This year, judging took place at Hubert Estate in the Yarra Valley.
Chair of Judges, Adam Wadewitz, said, “It was great to lead such a talented team once again for the 2023 James Halliday Australian Chardonnay and Cabernet Challenge. The judges found some real gems that highlight the best examples of Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon from across Australia. It was exciting to be judging some of the cooler vintages and noting that many of the awarded wines not only look good now but will reward those that can keep them in their cellar long enough.”
Challenge Patron, James Halliday AM, said, “Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon are an unlikely couple brought together because each is respected throughout the world of wine through the prism of fellow winemakers, of distributors and retailers, of collectors, of educators, and all those who simply enjoy a glass of great wine”.
22 ‘Best of Region’ Winners were awarded for wines achieving scores of 95 points or more.
The 2023 Chardonnay Challenge Regional Winners:
Sidewood 2022 Signature Owen's Chardonnay 96 points
Brokenwood Wines 2022 Indigo Vineyard Chardonnay 96 points
St Hugo 2022 Eden Valley Chardonnay 95 points
Dirty Three Wines 2022 All the Dirts Chardonnay 95 points
Brokenwood Wines 2022 Oakey Creek Vineyard Chardonnay 95 points
A. Rodda 2022 Baxendale Vineyard Chardonnay 95 points
Shadowfax 2022 Midhill Chardonnay 95 points
Evans & Tate 2021 Redbrook Estate Chardonnay 97 points
Paringa Estate 2021 The Paringa Chardonnay 95 points
Swinging Bridge 2021 Caldwell Lane Chardonnay 95 points
Derwent Estate 2020 Calcaire Chardonnay 96 points
Brokenwood Wines 2021 Maragle Vineyard Chardonnay 95 points
Oakridge 864 2021 Funder & Diamond Chardonnay 96 points
The 2023 Cabernet Challenge Regional Winners:
Kaesler Wines 2021 Cabernet Sauvignon 95 points
Jim Barry Barry and Sons 2021 Cabernet Sauvignon 96 points
Yalumba 2021 Sanctum Cabernet Sauvignon 96 points
Willow Bridge Estate Coat of Arms 2021 Cabernet Sauvignon Malbec 95 points
Forest Hill Vineyard 2022 Block 5 Cabernet Sauvignon 97 points
Gapsted Estate Ballerina Canopy 2021 Cabernet Sauvignon 95 points
Rivendell Estate 2020 Cabernet Sauvignon 95 points
d'Arenberg 2021 The High Trellis Cabernet Sauvignon 96 points
Thousand Candles 2021 Cabernet Sauvignon 95 points
The full results are available at australianwinechallenge.com.au