Vintage typically plays a secondary role in Australian wine. Since most years are good enough to produce high-performing bottlings, region, grape type and producer more often determine whether a wine is worthy of attention. The first half of the current decade, however, has seen its fair share of ups and downs. As Harvey Steiman reports in the Aug. 31 issue of Wine Spectator, 2011 was largely a big let down, 2013 and 2015 saw their challenges and 2012 and 2014 are looking to be the standouts. Yet, some varieties certainly fared better or worse throughout the tumultuous recent years.