New figures show domestic wine sales to the end of November were down nearly nine per cent on the previous year, to 34 million litres.
The Australian Bureau of Statistics says part of the reason was a much smaller crush, down nearly half a million tonnes.
Damien Sparkes from the ABS says the level of imported wine has also risen dramatically, from around two million litres per month to six million.
He says the drought has played a part, but there were other problems.
“There were other issues, particularly in the cooler climate areas of the Yarra Valley in Victoria and some of the regions in the Hunter Valley, where frost took away some of the fruit,” he says.
“There was always the concern with things like fungus and wine grape infection and also, at the time of picking, there were a number of bushfires around the country and that in itself, the smoke and the taste of the smoke, tainted the fruit”