Hand picked and whole bunch pressed. Fermented and matured on lees in French oak barriques and puncheons. Stone Fruit, Citrus Fruit, Yeasty Chardonnay
This undoubtedly one of the best chardonnays in Australia. Serious and built to last, it's refined and elegant and made with true craftsmanship, using wild ferments and allowing the fruit to shine. Stone fruit, lemon zest and grapefruit are at the heart of this white combined with subtle biscuity notes. It's intense and weighty, balanced by fresh, crisp acid. Pair it with blackened flathead and tomato chilli chutney.
Shaw + Smith own two vineyards in the Adelaide Hills, at Balhannah and Lenswood, totalling 55 hectares. The vineyards are planted to varieties that perform particularly well in the region, namely Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Shiraz. Shaw + Smith was established in 1989 by cousins Michael Hill Smith MW and Martin Shaw. They make wines exclusively from the Adelaide Hills, from varieties that suit the cooler climate: Sauvignon Blanc, Riesling, Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Shiraz. Shaw + Smith own two vineyards, in Lenswood and Balhannah. Balhannah is also home to the winery where the Tasting Room is open daily. Shaw + Smith’s first vintage was in 1990, and the early vintages were made at Wirra Wirra and Petaluma. In 1999 they purchased a property at Balhannah, where they planted vines, and built the winery and tasting room in time for the 2000 vintage. In 2012 they purchased an established 20 hectare vineyard in Lenswood. As the business has grown Michael and Martin have built a formidable team to continue the evolution of Shaw + Smith, including Master of Wine David LeMire, Senior Winemaker Adam Wadewitz, Business Manager Grant Lovelock and Group Viticulturist Murray Leake.
JAMES HALLIDAY - HALLIDAY'S WINE COMPANION
A beautifully poised wine, balance and elegance inevitably part of the equation. There is a purity to the drive of the fruit that makes recitation of what are usual stages of vinification unnecessary. It's the quality of the fruit, the attention to detail and the cumulated decades of experience that make this wine so special.
CAMPBELL MATTINSON - THE WINE FRONT
I like my flint and funk but when I first opened this it was alarming. It was a matchbox factory. Some chardonnays need a decant and a wait. Give this time and it shows both power and poise, its grapefruit, custard apple and stone fruit flavours woven expertly with cedar, oatmeal, almond milk and matches. It has a quartz-like aspect, a bristle to its brilliance. It’s narrow but it’s not lean; there’s more than enough power to its fruit. It should drink quite sensationally, from appropriate glassware, in another 2-4 years.
ANDREW GRAHAM - OZWINEREVIEW.COM
Another day, another excellent M3 Chardonnay. I know very little about art but I can appreciate craftsmanship when I see it. Ultra fine white peach fruit, perfectly defined palate is refined, the flavours both ripe and of fruit, but with acidity and tang. Utterly delicious. Masterpiece of delicacy and purity. Yes yes. Best drinking: ten years of you want, otherwise from anytime now.