Huon Hooke calls Collector’s Alex McKay ‘the quiet achiever of Canberra District wine’. James Halliday says he makes ‘consistently excellent… exquisitely detailed wines’. Here’s your chance to access (if you haven’t already) an elegant, affordable Canberra District Shiraz from McKay that’s highly likely to leave you permanently addicted.
25% whole bunches, the remainder whole berries, matured for 14 months in French oak (25% new). The usual movement and energy of Collector Wines, the intense bouquet full of exotic spices and black fruits, the palate opening with fine, sweet dark fruits rising to a crescendo of ripe tannins on the finish and aftertaste. Oh, and French oak too. 95 points, Wine Companion (10/2016).
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.