Named after Robert Strangways Wigley, a noted South Australian eccentric and state cricketer who established Wirra Wirra back in 1894. Each vintage the RSW takes pride as the flagship shiraz that befits McLaren Vale’s reputation as a first class producer of this varietal and home to some of the oldest shiraz vines in the world.
Parcels from each vineyard were picked in small batches and fermented separately in two tonne open fermenters to maintain their distinct vineyard character. Each batch was tasted twice daily to determine the level of hand plunging and maceration required during fermentation. At the required level of tannin and fruit extraction, each ferment was basket pressed with winemakers making the ‘press cut’ at the first sign of tannin hardness. Pressed batches were transferred to a tailored selection of French oak barriques and puncheons in which they completed malolactic fermentation. Following MLF and several times thereafter, individual wines were racked and returned. At the end of this program, select barrels from the most outstanding vineyard are blended and filtered with a single pass before going to bottle.
Vineyard batches were matured separately for 18 months, each in their own individual selection of French oak (predominantly Burgundian.) The final blend comprised of approximately 30% new oak, the balance coming from largely two to three year old barrels.
Wirra Wirra sources fruit from a combination of owned vineyards and premium McLaren Vale growers. The blend of individual vineyard and sub-regional characteristics is the key to the resulting style. Blended from a combination of old vine McLaren Vale sites - typically low in vigour, producing modest yields of intense fruit. Soils range from deep sands over ironstone, riverbed shale with loam to red clay loam over limestone.
Deep plum with a crimson rim. Deep and rich with blueberries, blackberries, dark plums and bitter chocolate. Lifted and aromatic with violet, cedar and star anise. The dense, rich core of black plums, sweet, ripe blueberries and dark forest fruits is infused with the polished cedar of French oak. Fruit and oak tannin knit together stylishly, building the savoury and structural dimensions on the palate. Deep and layered, a balanced display of power and style achieved by older, low-yielding Shiraz vines from McLaren Vale.
Wirra Wirra was originally established in 1894 and though abandoned after several decades of production was revived by the late Greg Trott in 1969. The winery produces exceptional value, fruit driven wine styles that don’t shy away from ripeness, intensity and oak usage. Wirra Wirra is located approximately four kilometres outside of the township of McLaren Vale in the McLaren Vale wine growing region of South Australia. Wirra Wirra source fruit from estate and selected grower vineyards. Wirra Wirra is the core range but the wines are delineated by tiers including Flagship wines, RGT collection, Church Block, Mrs Wrigley range and the entry level Scrubby Rise wines. The production of these wines is overseen by Chief Winemaker Paul Smith, with able assistance from Tom Ravech and Kelly Wellington. The winery employs modern technology and new world technique to produce expressive wines of intensity, bold flavour and McLaren Vale profile.
JAMES HALLIDAY - HALLIDAY'S WINE COMPANION
From a range of vineyards across McLaren Vale, each vinified and matured for 15 months in French oak separately prior to blending. The ultimate in glass bottle packaging, ‘RSW' boldly engraved on the glass. The second the wine enters the mouth it booms like a foghorn on a liner from years gone by with dark chocolate from Switzerland. The taste doesn't change much: black fruits, earth, spice, oak and tannins are also part of the DNA of this painstakingly made wine.
An impressive wine that delivers unbridled fleshy and playful fruit, which are framed in an astutely crafted tannin structure. The nose runs from red fruits to darker shades of plums and blackberries with a note of star anise and cloves. The tannins are silky and fluid with a very supple and seamless feel. Young and approachable. It will age very well and for more than a decade. Screw cap.
TONI PATERSON MW - THE REAL REVIEW
Layers of opulent, intense fruit in the blackberry, mulberry and boysenberry sphere. Excellent depth and roundness. The tannins appear to melt effortlessly into the body of the wine. It has a long cellaring future ahead
HUON HOOKE - THE REAL REVIEW
Deep, bright youthful colour with a dried earth, dry spice, savoury bouquet. The wine is very drying and the tannins are emery-like and quite fine. Full-bodied. There's a subtle whisper of cooler-vineyard spice, although it's very ripe, rich and fruit-sweet. A very appealing big red.