Shaw + Smith Shiraz
Beware the siren with the ruby-red lips. In a smoky room, here she strides – confident, cool, arresting. Slender, stalky cherry and a smear of blackcurrant bite, spiked with crushed peppercorns. No sunny smiles here, this is deadly serious. Leaner, finer and taut, it marks a big stride ahead from previous vintages. This vision of cool-climate Shiraz marks a new age of measured sophistication. Full-bodied with wonderfully structured tannins, seemingly unstoppable acidity and a long, chewy finish, which remains taut and mineral.
Sourced from low yielding vines predominantly at Balhannah, in the central Adelaide Hills, and from and Macclesfield, the warmer and drier sub-regions to the south, this is one of the benchmark Shiraz’ of the region. The fruit was fermented as a combination of whole berries and whole bunches in open fermenters and the resulting wine aged in French oak (33% new) for a period of 14 months.
About The Brand
Shaw + Smith was established in 1989 by cousins Michael Hill Smith MW and Martin Shaw. They make wines exclusively from the Adelaide Hills, from varieties that suit the cooler climate: Sauvignon Blanc, Riesling, Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Shiraz. Shaw + Smith own two vineyards, in Lenswood and Balhannah. Balhannah is also home to the winery where the Tasting Room is open daily.
Growing the best possible grapes, managing vineyards sustainably, and valuing vine health, soil health, and low yields are central to the Shaw + Smith approach. In the pursuit of quality, all grapes continue to be hand-picked, and the wines are fermented, aged and bottled on site at Balhannah. The wines are vibrant, medium bodied expressions of their varieties that reflect their sites and region.
Shaw + Smith’s first vintage was in 1990, and the early vintages were made at Wirra Wirra and Petaluma. In 1999 they purchased a property at Balhannah, where they planted vines, and built the winery and tasting room in time for the 2000 vintage. In 2012 they purchased an established 20 hectare vineyard in Lenswood. As the business has grown Michael and Martin have built a formidable team to continue the evolution of Shaw + Smith, including Master of Wine David LeMire, Senior Winemaker Adam Wadewitz, Business Manager Grant Lovelock and Group Viticulturist Murray Leake.