Australian wine country is like that. It’s a new frontier of that last frontier country. Millions of gallons of Australian wines are pouring into the United States with cutesy animal-related names like yellowtail and the Little Penguin, but those are coined by big corporations to tickle the fancy of undiscerning American consumers.
Those conglomerates now control more than 90 percent of Australian wine production. About 1,600 small wineries bottle the rest. These smaller vintners consider themselves farmers who practice a bit of agricultural alchemy to produce nectars from little more than vines grown deep into the thin soil, which manage to flourish despite scant rain and sometimes harsh temperatures.
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