Established in 1971 by CSIRO research scientist Dr John Kirk, Clonakilla is best known for championing shiraz viognier blends in Australia. Winemaking duties have since passed onto John's son Tim, and Clonakilla is now firmly recognised as one of Australia's elite producers. After frosts decimated much of Clonakilla's 2007 crop, Tim Kirk sourced fruit from other Canberra District growers to make the O'Riada Shiraz. 2% viognier is added to a wine which spent 12 months in French oak (35% new).
Faintly perfumed and musky, it elegantly unfolds to a savoury expression of redcurrants, cherries, aniseed and white pepper, backed by a glorious touch of fresh and fragrant, fine French oak. Medium-bodied yet supremely sophisticated, with savoury edges binding layers of exotic redcurrant/dark cherry flavour, its silky palate progresses into a sensual finish coated by an understated influence of powdery tannins gently tip-toeing throughout the mouth. Persisting undertones of game meats and licorice linger well into the aftertaste with an accompaniment of spice characters.
ü+ Exceptionally stylish, balanced, savoury and seamless; this is a highly addictive proposition. It's exactly the type of Australian shiraz the wine drinking world needs to be more aware of. Drink to 2019.