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Hot, hot, hot! 2017 is off to a scorching start here in Sydney, and what better way to cool off than a refreshing glass of white wine? We have created the ultimate guide to everything you’ll need to know about the different white wine varieties and what makes each one special. Here at Lantern Club we have 170 different types of wine, and we’re sure you’ll be able to find at least one you love! Whether you consider yourself a wine connoisseur or just a casual wine enthusiast, our insight will give you the edge on the most delicious white wines to drink this year.
White wine varieties

Australia’s Most Popular White Wine Varieties

Australians love a tasty glass of white wine; it’s been produced here for 190 years. That being said, how is one to know which glass is best for which occasion? Let’s be honest, white wine is good for ANY occasion. With nearly 2000 wine makers across Australia, there’s bound to be a type for every palate. Understanding the types of white wine can turn a glass from a bitter addition to an ordinary meal into the sparkling masterpiece that shines over an entire feast. We have compiled some of Australia’s most beloved white wine varieties for you (all of which are available here at the Lantern Club):

Chardonnay: 

This white wine has endless opportunities for flavor. From rich and powerful to fine and elegant, Chardonnay is delicious from the sizzling summer afternoons to the chilly winter nights. It is best served with meat and cheese, and accounts for over half of Australia’s white wine production, so we must be doing something right.

Riesling:

Most notably produced in South Australia, Riesling is known for its dry, sweet and fruity flavor. Its high level of acidity is well suited to Asian cuisine, and is ever rising in popularity in all parts of Australia. It has a delightful taste straight out of the bottle or can be aged for a softer, more toasty flavor as well.

Sauvignon Blanc:

Despite having a name near impossible to pronounce, Sauvignon Blanc is the most sold wine of the white wine varieties in Australia. It’s light, subtle and slightly dry, making it a versatile option when pairing a glass with all types of food.

Semillon:

Semillon tends to be rather dry and sweet, most notable with a lemony flavor. This type of white wine is most famous in the Hunter Valley region of Australia. While all wines age well, Semillon is known for its ability to age and evolve in richness and lemon flavors, right inside the bottle.

Pinot Gris/Pinot Grigio:

The names may sound similar, but the two varieties are made in completely different fashions. However, both carry a full and rich flavor with fruitful aromas. Both Pinot Gris and Pinot Grigio are increasing in popularity in Australia, mainly because both can be paired well with most foods.

Verdelho:

Yet another white wine famous in the Hunter Valley, Verdelho carries a fruity, almost tropical flavor that pairs well with a variety of foods, especially Spanish and Asian dishes. New South Wales and Western Australia are known to produce delicious bottles as well.
White wine varieties

Short History Lesson

Before we go into our recommendations for the best white wine varieties for 2017, here is a little bit of history and background of wine in Australia so you can impress your friends:

  • Australia produces over 1 billion litres of wine each year
  • The first grapes known to be harvested for wine in Australia came from land here in Sydney that is now known to be Macquarie Street
  • New South Wales has the second most vineyards in Australia, behind South Australia
  • There are over 100 varieties of wine currently produced in Australia
  • White wine contains less congeners (the chemical that causes hangovers) than red wine, which means less side effects such as headaches, irritability and nausea (For a full list of the health benefits of white wine, check out this link at LIVESTRONG)

Wine has a special place in Australia, and it has a special place here at Lantern Club as well. We take pride in our wine cellar and encourage you to come and try some yourself. You can book a table at our MàZi Restaurant or join our rewards program to receive discounts on our magnificent wine selection.

Lantern Club white wine recommendations

In our opinion, the following bottles are some of the best types of white wines carried here at Lantern Club:

Australian white wines

  • 2014 Jr Jones Pinot Grigio: this bottle showcases the cool climate of the Mornington Peninsula, with a lovely clean and crispy finish that is perfect for summer
  • 2015 Deen Sauvignon Blanc: a crisp and refreshing bottle at an affordable price
  • 2015 Kerrigan and Berry Riesling: the lower alcohol content makes this wine perfect for hot summer afternoons, with juicy and citrusy flavours
  • 2015 Origin Staff Chardonnay: the palate has good acidity and freshness with a lingering finish, pairing well with fresh seafood
  • NV Annies Lane Semillon Sauvignon Blanc: with subtle aromas of citrus, this white blend is clean and refreshing for a summer’s night

All white wine varieties mentioned are available by the bottle at Lantern Club, both in the Reward Shop and at MàZi Restaurant

Imported white wines

Although Australia is famous for its quality white wine and diversity of white wine varieties, it is important not to ignore the amazing wines that come from all over, such as America, Greece, Spain, Italy, France and Germany.
What many consumers don’t realise is that Austria is one country that produces an array of fantastic world-class white wines. The domestic market drives demand, leading to relatively high prices that keeps the Austrian wine varieties somewhat unknown. With a range of different climates and regions, there is a diversity of different varieties for every palate. Grüner Veltliner is without a doubt Austria’s most famous and most popular wine, as it is incredibly versatile and pairs well with most foods.
Another country that is yet again underrated for its ability to produce high quality wines- white wine varieties in particular- is Greece. This is somewhat surprising, considering the Greeks have been producing wine for thousands of years. Lovers of vibrant white wines like Sauvignon Blanc will be a fan of Greek varieties such as Athiri. Wines from this variety flaunt the scent of stone fruit, with a medium acidity. For more information about Greek wine varieties, click here.
White wine varieties

Our recommendations

  • 2013 Urgestein Riesling (Austria): try this beautiful white that comes from the oldest winery in the Danube region. It is powerful on the palate, with a crisp acidity
  • 2014 Masianico Pinot Grigio Verduzzo (Italy): a lovely medium bodied white wine that pairs perfectly with fish and white meat
  • 2015 Magic Mountain White Sauvignon Blanc (Greece): a rich wine with a sharp acidity and a long aftertaste, pairing well with seafood

Three Best Sellers – Reward Shop

  1. 2011 Lindeman’s Chardonnay Pinot Noir – $36.00 – Home Made Meal Match: Soft cheese plate
  2. 2015 3 Tales Sauvignon Blanc – $36.60 – Home Made Meal Match: Pan fried white fish fillet with butter sauce
  3. 2014 Lorimer Shiraz – $19.00 – Home Made Meal Match: Grilled sausages with mash and onion gravy

Three Best Sellers – MàZi Restaurant

  1. King Valley Prosecco Glera – $36.20 – MàZi Food Match: Margherita with mixed pepperoni and salami plate
  2. 821 Sauvignon Blanc – $31.60 – MàZi Food Match: Peeled prawns with pumpkin salad
  3. Stag Pinot Noir – $37.60 – MàZi Food Match: Pan fried duck confit

John Lanzafame’s Top Three Picks from the Reward Shop

  1. Prosecco Superiore Glera – $44.60 – Home Made Meal Match:  Ploughman’s lunch
  2. 2014 Junior Jones Pinot Grigio – $45.20 – Home Made Meal Match:  Chicken Caesar salad
  3. 2013 Single Vineyard D4 Nebiolo – $54.00 – Home Made Meal Match:  Roast lamb dinner

Please note all pricing mentioned is member pricing current at 18 January 2017.
At Lantern Club, we have an extensive wine list of over 170 different bottles. Each and every bottle was selected with care in conjunction with the producer or importer. We’re proud of the outstanding quality at all price levels. You can select many of our fine wines from our Reward Shop, or enjoy them with dinner at MàZi Restaurant.
Make a booking today to kick off your exploration of the best white wines of 2017.
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