d'Arenberg The Swinging Malaysian Shiraz
An incredibly spicy, exotic expression of McLaren Vale Shiraz. The bouquet leaps from the glass, a wonderful infusion of star anise, pepper, cinnamon, and clove adding
aromatic complexity to the more typical plum, mulberry and blackberry notes. The palate also offers an enticing array of sweet and savoury flavours. The mix of fruit and Asian spice marrying to produce a spiced plum effect but with an underlying raspberry lift. The mouthfeel has a pleasant mid weighted nature to it that sits in
harmony with the medium strength mineral
tannins. Balance and complexity.
Purchased in an era of free love, this vineyard has also done its fair share of swinging! First planted to shiraz in the 70s, it was grafted to Riesling, but was returned to its origins in 2001. Imported vineyard posts from Malaysia were trialled here but were too weak and had to be replaced.
A wet summer and winter in 2011 set the vines up perfectly for the 2012 vintage. Spring and summer were drier than normal, resulting in lower fruit yields. A small heat
burst just prior to veraison assured a solid colour change, small berries and pronounced tannins in the grapes. The red wines from this vintage are black, solid and
quite structured, the biggest year for some time; not oily but definitely gutsy.
Small batches of grapes are crushed gently and then transferred to five tonne headed
down open fermenters. These batches remain separate until final blending. Foot
treading is undertaken two thirds of the way through fermentation. The wine is then basket pressed and transferred to a mixture of new and used French and old American
oak barriques to complete fermentation. The barrel ferments are aged on lees, there
is no racking until final blending and no fining or filtration.