The Shiraz Viognier is our flagship, a careful selection of the best of the Shiraz Viognier parcels we craft from our Murrumbateman vineyards.
As seasons go, I’m not sure you can get better conditions than we had in 2015.
There was higher than average rainfall in December and January. Enough to make us a little nervous at the time and adding focus to our efforts to have our spray programs in good order.
By late January things warmed and dried and the miracle began to unfold: Day after day of mid to high 20s, cool nights, light breezes, a steady, warm glow in the vineyard with no pressure from excessive heat, rain or wind. Ripening proceeded like a dream.
The Shiraz and Viognier grapes were picked in immaculate condition and we edged up the level of whole bunches in the ferments from 22% to 30%. As ever, all parcels were natural yeast ferments. 18 – 21 days on skins and twelve months in one third new French barriques from Taransaud, Francois Freres, Mercurey and Sirugue. 5% co-fermented Viognier.
There is more of everything in the 2015. Intensely aromatic with a mysterious energy pulsing through the palate. Insistent and persistent. A grand cru if ever we have made one. The wine will cellar for many years.
Tim Kirk is continuing to refine and explore the myriad of possibilities from this great site. Increasingly turning to higher proportions of whole bunches in the fermentations,
palate is a masterpiece
he is getting greater and greater detail in his flagship wine. It is a thinker's wine, it stops you, draws you in and captivates. Incredibly detailed and floral-scented, the sumptuous and finely poised palate is a masterpiece.
This is a rare beauty, to see a syrah-based wine that delivers power in such an elegant way. 2015 is a really impressive vintage for Clonakilla across the board and this, the flagship wine, is every bit as great as it should be.
a rare beauty
The aromatic spectrum is vast, from fine musky florals to white pepper and almost every imaginable spice, then an incredibly exuberant explosion of fruit, boysenberry, raspberry, cherries of every shade, and plums from red to blue and purple; it is full of life.
The palate has an incredibly deep draw, total palate saturation of ripe red cherry, raspberry and red plum flavor, chocolate and a dusting of white pepper. The tannins radiate light and energy, bright from start to finish. Perfectly ripe, seamlessly balanced and actually very approachable.
Drink it now, but there's plenty to come in time; this will be best from 2022.
Great season for growing grapes if you had your ducks in a row in Canberra District. Last visit to Clonakilla I did a broad tasting of components that go into the Shiraz Viognier and I was taken back by how many parts make up the whole – it’s a very intricate wine, takes TLC of the highest order to come together. The 2015 wine sees higher than usual whole bunch component (and it is notable, and a very good inclusion) in the ferment, with 20-30% whole bunch in each ferment. This wine is on song.
a new classic for Clonakilla
I’m taken. Gorgeous, silky texture, a symphony of character in fragrance, game meats, herbs, red berries, clove, sweet spice.
The palate is incredible – supple, pliant, long, satiny yet etched with the finest tat-work of lacy tannin. It’s savoury, fruit driven, pure-feeling but lifted on fine spicy oak and glossy acidity. In essence, it drinks utterly superbly. It’s next level. It’s a new classic for Clonakilla. Glory be.