Leading Adelaide Hills winery, Shaw + Smith, has recorded their best two months on record taking out a swag of awards, topping annual drinks’ lists and being named Best Producer at the Adelaide Hills Wine Show announced 25 November. As well as Best Producer (over 100 tonnes), Shaw + Smith also took out trophies for the 2015 M3 Chardonnay (Best Chardonnay) and 2016 Sauvignon Blanc (Best Sauvignon Blanc).
Shaw + Smith’s Balhannah Tasting Room also didn’t go unnoticed, winning the Chanticleer Award for Most Welcoming Visitor Experience.
This year also saw the release of Shaw + Smith’s first single vineyard Adelaide Hills Chardonnay, the 2014 Shaw + Smith Lenswood Chardonnay, to rave reviews including starring in the AFR Magazine’s Top 20 Wines of 2016 announced by Philip Rich at the end of November.
In October, the wine industry also got behind Shaw + Smith, voting the winery Best White Wine Producer (over $25) at the Australian Liquor Industry Awards for the third time.
The highly acclaimed Tolpuddle Vineyard in Tasmania’s Coal River Valley continues to grab attention with the 2014 Pinot Noir being included in James Halliday’s Top 100 for 2016.
Co-founder Michael Hill Smith AM MW commented: “2016 has been a sensational year – from our winemaking team led by Adam Wadewitz, sales and marketing helmed by David LeMire MW, Murray Leake our Group Viticulturist, to our all important cellar door team. Martin and I couldn’t be more thrilled.”
There's a great article about Adelaide Hills Sauvignon Blanc in the recent issue of SA Life:
In defence of Sauvignon Blanc (SA Life, March 2016)
...Embracing subtle beauty rather than bland simplicity, the Adelaide Hills wines suggest it's time to look at sauvignon blanc afresh.
Shaw + Smith 2015 Sauvignon Blanc ($26)
'This brand has consistently driven the quality benchmark of Adelaide Hills sauvignon blanc - and it drove the initial success of this brand. Winemakers Martin Shaw and Adam Wadewitz greatly value the continued interest in this wine, and have never allowed it to show signs of complacency. Fussy with their selection of fruit parcels, they craft a serious wine with restrained gooseberry and tropical fruit aromas, with the zing of grapefruit on entry but more weight in the middle palate with a nashi pear crush. It gives a rich satisfying mouthfeel before sliding into a fine, dry finish.'
There was some stiff competition on the day, but after reviewing all entries, Kate came out the winner of our 2015 Open Day Options Challenge and will receive the Magnum of 2013 Shaw + Smith Pinot Noir - Congratulations Kate!
For those who came to Open Day 2015 and entered the Challenge, here are the wines that were tasted:
2015 Andrew Thomas 'Braemore' Semillon (Hunter Valley)
2013 William Fevre Chablis (Burgundy)
2010 Taylor's Cabernet Sauvignon (Clare Valley)
Congratulations to Taria Jane Somers - the winner of our Shaw + Smith Luxury Escape Competition.
We had an amazing response to this competition - thanks to everyone who entered, and thanks also to Bailie Lodges and Southern Ocean Lodge for their participation in this sensational prize.
Following on from our last guide to Adelaide Wine Bars, Dan Coward was given the challenge to come up with a guide to Melbourne venues. Melbourne has so much to offer, and after much deliberation, sweat and tears, these are our recommendations, although this article carries a large disclaimer that it is simply not possible to provide a comprehensive Wine Bar guide to Melbourne in under 1000 words...
There is literally no way to cover off Melbourne’s thriving wine bar scene in under 1000 words (or glasses?), but that doesn’t mean we’re not going to try. During the day drink in the bustling majesty of the City Wine Shop, with its enticing wall of wine, surfeit of global Riesling and the best schnitzel around, before heading upstairs in the wee hours to get lost in the wine bible and comfy chesterfields at the Supper Club. Elsewhere in town Cumulus Up (above Cumulus Inc) is a wine destination in its own right, while Movida Aqui has you covered if you’re in an Iberian sort of mood. For a dynamic one-two punch south of the CBD go to Bellota Wine Bar with its easy European style and the encyclopedic knowledge of the Price Wine Store team before resting up at the big bar table of Port Melbourne’s Harry & Frankie. Like several of its contemporaries Harry & Frankie applies a modest drink-in corkage fee to any of the bottles along its walls. It’s a great way to try something more expensive without breaking the bank. North of the city and your attention could be split between Carlton institution, Gerald’s Bar, and Fitzroy mainstay, the Gertrude Street Enoteca. Both are small, utterly authentic and obsessed with good wine. Finally, if you’re not exhausted or broke head west to Clever Polly’s for a walk on the vinous wild side and then even further west to the Seddon Wine Store to escape the madding crowds. And if you need even more suggestions than that…you’re made of stronger stuff than us…
Winner of the Shaw + Smith Shiraz Vertical Selection and Nick Mount Decanter
Congratulations to Gabby Tait who has won our Tasting Room competition drawn on 1 May 2015. Gabby will receive the Shaw + Smith vertical Shiraz selection plus a Nick Mount decanter.
Thank you to everyone who entered this competition. The draw date for the next Tasting Room competition is 30 September 2015.
Today is International Sauvignon Blanc Day, and while we weren't aware of this fact until around lunchtime today, it is still fitting that the team has been tasting through our new vintage Sauvignon Blanc batches for classification.
Martin Shaw, Adam Wadewitz and David LeMire tasted individual batches of the 2015 Sauvignon Blanc and the consensus was that this vintage shows consistent and even quality, with the different vineyard sources all performing very highly.
In David's words: "Lovely aromatics, crisp acidity and great flavours."
The 2015 Shaw + Smith Sauvignon Blanc is scheduled for release in July 2015.
The S+S team travels frequently and between us, we spend quite a bit of time in restaurants and wine bars. We have started to put together a list of some of our favourite venues around Australia to share our experiences and thoughts with you, starting this month with Dan Coward's guide to Adelaide wine bars.
Once upon a time Adelaide had the Universal Wine Bar and Krug at the Exeter Hotel and that was about it. Well the Krug is still there but the wine bar scene has exploded dramatically in the last few years. Go west for cocktail lists, late night juke joints and the forever young Apothecary 1878, or head east for the vinous beating heart. The Tasting Room, part of the iconic East End Cellars, slices charcuterie and pours a small but interesting list by the glass, while offering you a whole wine shop of bottles to drink in with a small corkage charge. Across the road Mother Vine blends the classics – Sherry, Nebbiolo and Burgundy – with top Aussie producers like Wendouree, Ochota Barrels and SC Pannell. Just round the corner Africola completes the picture with quirky local labels next to South African pioneers.
With the best views of the city, newly opened 2KW (at 2 King William Street) has had a stunning fit out. Dress smartly and drink classically. Venture down Waymouth Street and Proof (behind the brilliant Press) provides the perfect dark corners to imbibe from an extensive wine list curated by journo Tim White and local young gun Dave Currie. Another making waves is Travis Tausend at Cork Wine Café on Gouger Street, where quirky cloudy bottles are the order of the day. Cantina Sociale (pictured) is rambunctious, complete with wines from barrel and great snacks, while the latest welcome entrant on the scene is Bar Torino, next to Chianti on Hutt Street, championing all things Mediterranean. Finding interesting wine in Adelaide has really never been so much fun.
Congratulations to Liz Hoklas - you won the Shaw + Smith vertical Shiraz pack and Nick Mount decanter.
Thank you to everyone who has entered our recent competition.
Congratulations to Brianna Chappell - you won a case (6) of award-winning 2009 Aged Release Shiraz.
Thank you to everyone who has entered our recent competition.