Today is International Syrah Day, and while we don’t have a Syrah in our wine range, we do love sharing information about wines and how they are made, so we think today is a great day to chat about Syrah vs Shiraz.
Here’s a fun fact – Syrah and Shiraz are in fact the same grape variety, but point more to the style in which the wine is made.
What’s the difference between Shiraz and Syrah?
If a wine is made from the same grape, then why would it be labelled as something different? This can certainly be confusing for consumers.
Syrah is the name used for the grape in France, particularly in the Rhone region. The name difference is now being used by wine producers in Australia to differentiate in wine style – to indicate that their wine is more ‘French’ in style, and is not a bigger, bolder style that is associated with Shiraz.
Decanter provides further clarification:
Syrah, mostly referring to Old World expressions, is lighter in body and alcohol, leaner and with finer tannins. Shiraz, on the other hand, refers to New World, intense wines, which are generally richer, with riper aromas and fuller in both body and alcohol.
So in Australia, some producers from cooler climates or higher altitudes are choosing to use the term Syrah on their labels. There is, however, no regulation around the use of the term Shiraz or Syrah, so it might not always be indicative of what you’re expecting as a consumer.
We produce Shiraz, and are proud of the Barossa’s history with the variety. Our oldest vineyards are Shiraz, planted in 1894 (Nuriootpa) and 1915 (Greenock), and we are proud to be the custodians of rare pieces of Barossa Valley viticultural heritage.
Food matches for Shiraz / Syrah
Of course the go to for a Shiraz is to match with a meat dish such as a steak, with a hearty winter stew or to open when the BBQ is on. Burgers are also a great match for Shiraz – a beef or lamb burger, or even a vegetarian burger with a lentil patty.
If you love a good cheese plate, make sure you have some olive tapenade and crusty bread within reach. Add some marinated, grilled eggplant and make sure the cheese is hard (not a soft cheese). The saltiness of these platter items will go well with the fruit of the Shiraz / Syrah in your glass.
Love to cook a good steak at home? Then check out this recipe from Chef Justin at Windy Point Restaurant which he shared to match with the 2018 Command Shiraz upon its release last year. It would pair well with most Shiraz wines! GET THE RECIPE
You might also like to try a Beef Wellington with this delicious recipe from Carême Pastry.