Welcome to wine school: a simple guide to WA wines and cheese pairing

Bit of a wine novice? Get the basics and wine matching inspo for your next dinner party.

Ever wondered why Margaret River is famous for Cabernet Sauvignon? Why Riesling shines in the Great Southern? Or why the Swan Valley does Verdelho so well?

Turns out the weather and the dirt have a lot to do with it.

“You’ll discover a range of styles and varieties with each region focusing on what suits their unique environment type,” Larry Jorgensen, CEO of Wines of Western Australia, said.

Yep, the diversity of growing conditions across WA means our home state certainly punches above its weight in the wine stakes, with the type of quality that’s right at home on the global stage.


The best of the west:  get to know WA’s wine-growing regions 

Margaret River

World famous for its Cabernet Sauvignon, Margaret River wines tend to be medium bodied, perfumed and elegant, with powdery emery fine tannins and crisp acidity.

The industry body says heavy winter rainfalls, cool sea breezes and a Mediterranean climate make it a grape growing paradise capable of ripening Cabernet Sauvignon right to the end of seasons. The conditions suit chardonnay, too.

Try a Xanadu Cabernet Sauvignon or the Stella Bella Suckfizzle Chardonnay.

The Swan Valley

One of the warmest grape growing regions in Australia, the Swan Valley’s climate is shaped by a long, dry summer that allows its grapes to reach maximum ripeness.

Long summers mean late harvested fruit, which local producers use to make the fortified wines the region is famous for, according to Larry.

“Its diverse soils allow many different grape varieties to be grown including Chenin and Verdelho,” he said.

Try Faber Vineyard’s 2019 Swan Verdelho.

The Great Southern

The coolest of WA’s wine regions, the Great Southern is home to more than 70 producers and is fast developing a reputation for premium cool climate wines. Its cold maritime climate is ideal for zippy Riesling and mid-weight Shiraz.

Try the 2009 Aged Release Plantagenet Riesling or the 2016 Singlefile Run Free Shiraz.


Perfect match: ideal pairings for WA wines

Getting friends or family together? Whether it’s to celebrate a birthday, getaway or a Saturday – these food and wine pairings will help get the party started.


Blue cheese with bubbles  

When nibbling on a blue cheese, a glass of sparkling will cut through the bite!

Platter up with some Coal River Farm blue cheese, prosciutto and a jar of olives from Italian Delicacies, and wash it all down with some NV Swings and Roundabouts Sparkling.


Salmon with chardonnay 

An oily fish like salmon, simply pan fried with lemony flavours, goes great with a silky chardonnay.

Next time you’re plating this dish up, pour some 2017 Southside Chardonnay from Lenton Brae.


Goat’s cheese with sauvignon blanc

Sauvignon blanc and goat’s cheese could be considered a match made in heaven.

So if a goat’s cheese tart is on the menu, try pairing it with the 2017 Fermoy Estate Sauvignon Blanc.


Steak with shiraz 

Prefer to keep things simple with a juicy pink steak? Red wine and red meat is known to pair well, so pour your friends a glass of shiraz.

The Dell’uva 2015 Frill Hill Shiraz will do nicely.


Truffles with pinot noir

Ag, truffles – those little nuggets of black gold have such a big, beautiful flavour. They’re also are the perfect ingredient to lift a simple meal like risotto to a whole new level.

Grab a jar from Great Southern Truffles and pair that wonderfully earthy flavour with a bottle of The Lake House 2016 Reserve Pinot Noir.


Braised beef with cabernet sauvignon 

Slow cooked braised beef is a sure-fire crowd pleaser in winter and a hearty feed of braised beef needs a big red at the party.

For something a bit special, try Faber Vineyard’s 2016 Frankland River Cabernet Sauvignon.

Join us at the Good Food & Wine Show