Nestled into the Northern foothills of the Victorian Alps, the Alpine Valleys harbor a handful of dogged grape growers whose ancestors arrived in the 1850s after a less-than-comfortable boat trip from Italy. With lofty slopes climbing to 2000 feet, vineyards are snow clad in winter and punch through clouds to nab a slice of sunshine during summer. Four valleys are created by the Ovens, Buffalo, Buckland and Kiewa rivers, whose ancient flows dumped granite-based loam that the vines greedily nosh to produce flinty, minerally wines. View all Frisk Wines
From stickies to Pinot Noir, Victoria is varied in its wines. The southernmost state of Australia, Victoria is third in wine production, after South Australia and New South Wales. The state is home to the cool-climate Yarra Valley, Yarra Valley, a producer of quality Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, as well the warmer regions of Rutherglen & Glenrowan. These two areas are hot and dusty and famous for their sweet, fortified stickies.
Notable FactsLots of coastline gives Victoria a cool climate, appropriate for growing grapes like Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. Many new regions are discovering their growing potential – especially with these grapes. Inland gets warmer, and some of the best fortified wines are made here,as well as some good Shiraz. Victoria also makes the most Sparking Shiraz.
The most famous of the California wine regions is Napa Valley, and these wines are certainly outstanding – but it's not as broad and diverse as its larger neighbor, Sonoma County. Down south, Santa Barbara's Santa Maria Valley is well-known for its Rhône blends, as well as cool-climate varieties like Pinot and Chardonnay. The Central Coast, the largest California AVA, has many different microclimates that lead to a wide range of wines with many sub-AVAs.