Characterising inter- and intra-regional variation in sensory profiles of Australian Shiraz wines from six regions

W. Pearson, L. M. Schmidtke, I. L. Francis, B. T. Carr, J. W. Blackman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


Background and Aims

Wines that exhibit regional characters are often the most sought after and the highest valued wines available in the marketplace. This study evaluated the sensory properties that were regionally distinctive for Australian Shiraz wines.

Methods and Results

Sets of wines (22–28 wines) from six prominent Australian Shiraz-producing regions were initially evaluated by groups of local winemakers using a rapid sensory method called Pivot Profile (PP) to obtain maps of their sensory characteristics. Three or four wines from each region were then selected using cluster analysis of the PP data and were evaluated using sensory descriptive analysis. The regional PP assessments provided a sensory fingerprint of the variability of each of the regions studied and identified sensory characteristics that typified the largest groups of wines of each region. The descriptive analysis highlighted sensory characteristics that distinguished the wines from the different regions, including mint, cooked vegetal, viscosity, dark fruit and savoury attributes.


This work has provided detailed quantitative data on the sensory properties associated with each of the regions and demonstrated that there are distinctive, region-specific sensory characteristics.

Significance of the Study

Sensory fingerprints that differentiate one region from another will aid producers and the trade in appreciating what can be expected from different regions; they allow targeting of production decisions to enhance distinctive sensory attributes and will assist in improved communication between marketers and consumers.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)372-384
Number of pages13
JournalAustralian Journal of Grape and Wine Research
Issue number4
Early online date07 Sept 2020
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2020


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