...grown on both the Clonakilla estate vineyard and various other vineyards within the Canberra District. It takes time to open up but once it has it’s a pearl. It’s full of black pepper and five-spice character and, indeed, it’s smoky and reductive and a touch stinky. Be warned. It’s that style of wine. But it combines elegance and power, juicy fruit and a taut run of tannin, and in the end it sings long and harmonious. Did I mention nuts? And peppers? And herbs? It’s beautiful now, and it’s going to mature deliciously. Drink 2019-2026+ 95 points, Wine Front (12/2016).
'A strikingly fragrant and perfumed effort from Clonakilla, this wine captures you instantaneously. It is superbly constructed, aromatically fragrant, perfumed and darkly fruited; on the palate spice, superfine tannins and then the finish that just lingers and expands.'
97 points, James Halliday
'…a pearl… full of black pepper and five spice character… combines elegance and power, juicy fruit and a taut run of tannin, and in the end it sings long and harmonious. Did I mention nuts? And peppers? And herbs? It’s beautiful now, and it’s going to mature deliciously. Drink 2019-2026+'
95 points, Campbell Mattinson
This is super youthful and also quite tightly wound. It has very attractive and exuberant style. Aromas of mixed red, blue and darker berry fruits, fine baking spices and chocolate, and an unmistakable fine white peppery edge – exudes a sense of ideal ripeness. The palate delivers a smooth, fluid and succulent impression, quite juicy and fleshy through the middle palate; hints of licorice here amid dark plum and pepper-dusted redder berry flavours, with a twist of spice through the finish. Brilliant wine; one for mid-term cellaring. Best from 2020. 94 points, jamessuckling.com
Vines were first planted in the Canberra District in 1971 near Lake George by Dr Edgar Riek. The district is roughly divided into two areas, one in the Yass Valley around Murrumbateman and the other around Lake George and Bungendore. Canberra District has a cool continental climate with hot dry summers necessitating irrigation. A region of rolling hills, with elevations varying between 300 and 800 metres, means that spring frost is a real hazard, making site selection crucial. Small producers dominate the region, making handcrafted, high-quality wines particularly from Riesling, Viognier, Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Shiraz.
ClonakillaThe story of Clonakilla is one of risk and ingenuity, of vision, generosity and faith. Founded in 1971, Clonakilla grew from a small, struggling boutique winery in the marginal wine region of Murrumbateman to become an icon of ultra-fine Australian wine. Under the skilled winemaking of Chief Winemaker Tim Kirk, Clonakilla’s remarkable flagship wine, the Langton’s Classified ‘Exceptional’ Clonakilla Shiraz Viognier has risen to become a definitive example of its genre. Clonakilla also produces a number of superb whites including Riesling, Chardonnay and Viognier alongside its range of superbly crafted cool climate reds.