A deliberately long-aged expression of the cumulative best of our McLaren Vale vineyard site, 'Skeleton Key’ is cellared and carefully bottle aged before it is unlocked.
Slightly higher elevation means the original Penny’s Hill vineyard enjoys a climate a little cooler than the rest of McLaren Vale. This ensures more consistent temperatures throughout the ripening period, allowing Shiraz to reach optimum ripeness with minimum stress. Penny’s Hill Shiraz benefits demonstrably from a high density, narrow-row layout which sees less crop load per vine than is usual in the region. Detailed canopy management, judicious irrigation and passionate viticultural practices contribute to this outstanding Shiraz.
Individual shiraz blocks from the Penny’s Hill Vineyard site were harvested and vinified separately to best express the variations in terrior. Blocks were harvested during the small window of 17th-23rd of February and fruit parcels were fermented on skins in open fermenters for 10 days. Maturation was in the finest French oak barriques, of which 40% were new and remaining 1-3 year old oak. After 18 months, the wine was barrel selected and blended to best showcase the complexities and diversity of the Penny’s Hill Vineyard site.
A true reflection of its terroir, this wine shows perfumed red berry fruit, coupled with satsuma plum, blackberry and dark chocolate. Subtle oak spice plays a supporting role and adds a layered complexity. The palate demonstrates a high level of fruit intensity, showing depth and concentration. This tightly structured wine is pure and elegant; its fine tannins have focus, direction and length to charm.
Ready to drink but will cellar for 6-10 years.
pH 3.60 | TA 6.12g/L | Alc/vol 14.5%
94 Points: James Halliday - Wine Companion 2018: "Grown on the Penny's Hill vineyard, 18 months in 40% new French barriques, the balance 1-3 yo. This is perhaps the most idiomatic of the '15 vintage Penny's Hill shiraz releases. Lashings of blackberry, plum, chocolate and sweet/spicy oak fill the bouquet, and then flood on to the palate, effortlessly rippling along with gently persuasive tannin as the guiding hand.”
93 Points: Jeremy Oliver - jeremyoliver.com: "Deeply ripened, this luscious, old school red marries slightly jammy, densely packed flavours of black and red fruits with chocolatey, treacle-like oak and polished velvety tannins. It’s wild and briary, with undertones of spice, raisins and roasting pan juices”
GOLD Medal - AWC Vienna, 2017