Red Claw Heathcote Shiraz
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- Want a reliable cellar filler that will keep getting better with age? The Red Claw Shiraz from Heathcote is a likely candidate, as this red is only just beginning to find its feet. It’s filled with the unique complexity garnered from ancient Cambrian soil and shows a swathe of black fruit, earth and spice on the nose. Amazing intensity on the palate with a great balance achieved between fruit, tannins and acid. 80
Dam storages were still full and soil profiles likewise leading into the beginning of the season, after a wet previous year. Spring temperatures were slightly warmer than average. This warm weather combined with excellent soil moisture contributed to abundant growth and some meticulous bunch thinning followed. Flowering and fruit set were terrific and unaffected by the significant rainfall in November. The summer months were to be reasonably dry, and January warmer than average. February daily maximum temperatures were cooler than average however daily minimum temperatures (overnight lows) were to be higher than average. These higher overnight lows meant the vines were ripening at a good, consistent rate and optimum grape maturity was reached a little earlier. The vineyard was entirely hand picked with each parcel of fruit carefully selected. Harvest started on the Thursday 23rd February.
The grapes were fermented in a combination of open and closed fermenters. There were 8 individual batches, 2 of which were whole bunch. The wines were then pressed and transferred into barrels for malolactic fermentation. Remained in barrel for a total of 15 months (100% French, 20% new – 60% 300L hogsheads and the rest barriques) and during maturation was racked four times.
100% French, 20% new – 60% 300L hogsheads and the rest barriques.
Bright, dark berry fruit and lifted spice dominate the aromas, with underlying scents of pepper and subtle French oak.
The palate is plush and silky, loaded with dark fruited shiraz intensity. Excellent structure and concentration.
James Halliday (2012 Vintage) says:“
Strong colour; a medium to full-bodied shiraz with blackberry and plum to the fore, but with a strong platform of tannins (and a little French oak) to carry the wine over the remainder of the decade.
Best Drinking: By 2020Wine Companion93