Featured Reviews

The Hedonist 2016 McLaren Vale Sangiovese, Shiraz and Cabernet

03 July,2018

The Hedonist is the McLaren Vale-based South Australian wine venture of Walter Clappis, his daughter Kimberley Cooter, and her husband James Cooter. All three are highly experienced and well-regarded winemakers, Walter best known for owning the Ingoldby Winery. The Hedonist has become known for its minimal interventionalist winemaking and its NASAA certified biodynamic estate vineyard. www.hedonistwines.com.au Here, I review the 2016 Sangiovese, Shiraz and Cabernet Sauvignon. They are all modern, contemporary and accessible in style. The wines are distributed in New Zealand by Jules van Costello of Dirtoir Selections. www.cultwine.co.nz


The Hedonist McLaren Vale Sangiovese 2016

Sangiovese from Australia – South Australia


Dark, deep, ruby-red colour with suggestions of black hues at the heart, and lighter garnet tints on the edge. The nose is gently full and voluminous with softly-packed aromas of savoury dark-red berry fruit melded with notes of game, spices, dark and dried herbs and earthy detail. Medium-full bodied, the palate is elegantly concentrated with fine and smoothly packed core of savoury red berry fruit entwined with earth and dark herbs, along with soft spices and nuances of game. The fruit possesses a soft richness and sweetness, and is balanced by light, supple, grainy tannin extraction with integrated acidity. This has linearilty, and the wine carries to a slender, dry, soft finish. This is a moderately sweet and rich Sangiovese with savoury dark-red berry fruit, earth and dark herb, game and spice notes on a supple-textured palate. 94% Sangiovese and 6% Cabernet Sauvignon from estate vines in the Willunga foothills, fermented to 13.5% alc., the wine spending 30 days on skins, 70% of the wine aged 12 months in seasoned French oak 300 L hogshead barrels. 17.5/20 Jul 2018 RRP $30.00

The Hedonist McLaren Vale Shiraz 2016

Syrah from Australia – South Australia


Full, deep, saturated black-red colour with purple hues, youthful in appearance. The nose is rich and vibrant with very ripe and aromatic blackberry and dark raspberry fruit with lifted black pepper and violet florals, unfolding Asian spices, a little tar and minerals, with plum jam elements. This has a degree of finesse and elegance of proportion. Medium-full bodied, the palate has very rich and sweet, lusciously ripe fruit flavours of blackberries, boysenberries, black plums and raspberry jam, along with black pepper, lifted violet florals and spices. The fruit forms an elegantly concentrated core with fine-grained tannins providing drive and line, with soft acidity enhancing the richness. The wine carries to a long, lingering finish of plums and blackberries. This is a sweetly rich and luscious, but elegant, ripe Shiraz with blackberry, boysenberry and plum fruit on a finely structured palate. Match with roast and grilled lamb, beef and venison over the next 5-6 years Estate fruit from the Willunga foothills, fermented with a small portion of whole bunches to 14.0% alc., the wine aged in French and American oak, 20% new French barrels. 18.5-/20 Jul 2018 RRP $30.00

The Hedonist McLaren Vale Cabernet Sauvignon 2016

Cabernet Sauvignon from Australia – South Australia


Very dark, deep, black-hued ruby-red colour with some purple hues on the rim. The nose is tightly bound with a firm heart of ripe blackcurrant fruit along with cassis liqueur, entwined with fresh and dark herbs, a little mint and a suggestion of eucalyptus. This is well-proportioned and possesses depth and density. Medium-full bodied, the palate is elegant in proportion with a tight and deep core of sweetly ripe blackcurrant fruit with cassis liqueur interwoven with mint and dark herb notes. The fruit is stylishly restrained, and supported by fine-grained tannin structure and grip, with lacy acidity, lending some firmness. The wine carries to an elegant, lingering finish. This is a restrained, elegant Cabernet Sauvignon with classical blackcurrant and cassis varietal character, fine, firm tannins and freshness. Match with herb-marinated lamb and beef dishes over the next 5-6 years. Estate fruit from the Willunga foothills, vines 20 y.o., fermented to 13.5% alc., the wine aged 18 months in 15% new French oak. 18.0-/20 Jul 2018 RRP $30.00

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