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How to Choose Between Malbec and Shiraz Wine?

How to Choose Between Malbec and Shiraz Wine?


Malbec and Shiraz grapes are both used to make wine. Both wines have their own unique flavor profile because of their origins, climate, and soil type.

When comparing Malbec & Shiraz, it is important to note that the main reason for this difference is that Malbec grapes are grown in cooler climates than Shiraz grapes, which grows in warmer climates. The different climates produce different flavors in the wine.

First things first, Both the wines are compared because they both are full-bodied and well-structured bold red wines. Even after these similarities that they both share, they still vary in some ways. This article will be looking at the two wines and their differences.

Features of the Wines

Let’s discover about each of them and look at the main differences between Malbec and Shiraz.

1. Origins and Grapes

  • Malbec is originated from France in the Cahors region but is more related to and celebrated in Argentina. Toda and is one of the most demanded and hence important grape varieties.
  • Before Argentina started growing it in roughly the 18th century, it was considered to be the kind of grape that was not suitable for making wine.
  • Malbec is one of the original five main grape varieties. This wine grape variety is a product of an ancient grape variety called Magdeleine Noire des Charentes.
  • These grapes are dark purple in color, small, thick-skinned, and mid-ripening, producing structured full-bodied wines.

  • The origin of Shiraz wine is conflicted and unclear between two countries. Some people say it is originated from Australia, while some say Iran.
  • If we look at the history, the name of the wine refers to the city where it was produced, but now the name has an alternative which is “Syrah,” which is majorly used in Australia and a few other countries.
  • Although both are the same grape variety, it’s just that Syrah indicates a more cool weather wine style and Shiraz indicates a bolder warm-climate style.
  • This grape variety has thick skin and dark color and is now grown in other parts of the world too.

2. Taste and Flavors

  • Malbec is a full-bodied wine that comes has a deep purple color and lots of flavors.
  • It comes in two different styles, majorly based on the region where they are grown and produced. Both are almost similar in taste, just a few subtle changes here and there.
  • A typical Malbec has jammy flavors of plum, pomegranate, blackberry, raspberry, and raisins. There are also hints of black pepper, tobacco, coffee, and leather. It is medium acidic and average tannins levels, and does not taste bitter because of the abundance of fruity flavors.

  • The grape variety used for making Shiraz has a very thick skin, which results in a very deep color and produces a dark and opaque colored wine.
  • This wine offers very rich juiciness to your palate. It has fresh notes of sweet red fruit, blackberry, spice, vanilla, clove, and pepper.
  • This wine has medium acidity with high tannins and is full-bodied. It falls on the dry side. You will get a strong front mouthfeel and finishes with a unique feel on the palate.

Malbec vs. Shiraz – Comparison Table

Categories Malbec Shiraz
Appearance  It has a deep and opaque purple-red color. But the rim has an appealing bright magenta tone. It also has a very dark ruby red color with some purple hues and is one of the darkest red wines.
Aroma It has the aromas of fresh red fruit, licorice, leather, caramel, tobacco, and some touch of coffee. It has the aromas of fruits like blackberry, tobacco, clove, flowers, and sauce.
Sweetness It is a full-bodied red wine that falls on the dry side for your palate. It is also a dry wine and when compared with Malbec it is more or less same.
Alcohol It is a high alcohol content wine, and the average ABV ranges from 13-14.5%. It is also a high alcohol content wine and often has an ABV range of 13-14%, but it can approach 15.5% when grown in a warmer region.
Ageing Worthiness It is best enjoyed within 5-7 years. It can be enjoyed for a slightly more years that is, 4-12 years.
Cost The average price can vary from $5 – $40. It is  slightly more expensive one and the price range has no limits but you can get a good Shiraz of around $25.
Food Pairings It goes well with foods like steak, pork, salmon, poultry-dark meat, and game meat too. It goes well with foods like braised beef, grilled meats, vegetables, barbecue, especially with the spareribs.
How it is used It is used to drink when you want red wine, which is budget-friendly—a good option to pair with your dinner. It is popular in its monovarietal version as it has a structure of its own. As this wine has intense flavors, you need to have foods that are spicy and full of flavors; otherwise, it will overshadow all your food, but if you want to enjoy it, then consider some subtle ones as it is a great option to pair with your dinner. It is also popular for its monovarietal version.


Both Malbec and Shiraz are red wines and share some similarities. If you are someone who loves the food just as much as you love drinking wine, then we recommend you to go for the Malbec as it is very versatile and perfect to pair with different food items. It is a bold and thick-bodied wine that goes well with different food flavors.

But if you are someone who wants to enjoy specifically the taste of wine and its journey from start to finish, then we will recommend you try the Shiraz wine. It offers a more complex profile of flavors and comes with a proper structure that can be enjoyed on its own, and with food having subtle flavors.

The end word will be just be that always trust your likes and your taste. Both these wines are fantastic and unique in their own ways! But as we always say to you, it all comes down to your preferences, and nothing matters before that.


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