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The Grampians wine region, in Western Victoria, is one of the true treasures of the Australian wine scene.  An historic region, with a history dating back to the mid 19th century, unlike many other regions whose viticultural history dares back that far, the Grampians is a continual history.great-western.jpg

It is essentially bush, with a gold-mining history.  When the gold ran out, several locals turned to wine and planted grapes.  Brothers Henry and Joseph Best established the wineries of Bests and Seppelt in 1866 and 1865 respectively.  Bests still has two sizeable plots of vines dating back to these original plantings, and both have propogated their own unique clone of Shiraz from these plantings (although confusingly, it's known as the 'Bests' clone and the 'St Peters' clone at the two estates.

The region is noteworthy for many things, but really, it's Shiraz that comes to the fore here.  And unusually, both sparkling Shiraz as well as normal table wine.

The soils are typically brown-grey sandy loams over clay, and thanks to its proximity to the Great Dividing Range, enjoys significantly cooler temperatures than one would expect.  Rainfall is generally low, and the drought from the mid 1990s to 2010 wreaked havoc on many of the region's old (and extremely old) vines, killing many off.