Hewitson The Mad Hatter Shiraz 2006
Syrah/Shiraz from McLaren Vale, Australia
The 2006 The Mad Hatter is a rich and intense wine with a deep, inky, purple colour. Hedonistic aromas of licorice, crème de cassis, blackberries, flowers, minerals and spice strike the nose. These aromas are followed by an even more powerful, concentrated mid-palate with superb flavors of chocolate, blackberry and mocha coupled with fine ripe tannins. The finish is long and multi-dimensional. This complex Shiraz is approachable now or will cellar for 10+ years.
Australian Wine Companion - "A single-vineyard wine with 20 months in French oak, which is counter-cultural in its elegant, medium-bodied profile and moderate alcohol; red fruits and touches of mocha and chocolate predominate."
International Wine Cellar - "Deep, bright violet. Intensely floral bouquet displays dark berries, cola, violet, wilted rose and Asian spices. Fleshy and smooth in texture, offering sweet dark berry flavors and betraying no rough edges. Impressively sappy on the finish, which strongly repeats the floral and cola notes."
The Wine Advocate - "The 2006 The Mad Hatter Shiraz is opaque purple colored with an aromatic array of scorched earth, tar, beef blood, black currant, and blueberry. Ripe, dense, and powerful in the mouth, this savory, balanced, lengthy effort will evolve for 4-6 years and drink well through 2021. "
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Dean Hewitson is driven by passion. His creation of individual, exquisite wines from the ancient vineyards of South Australia is for your indulgence.
Dean Hewitson has been indeed very fortunate to be tutored by some of the best wine makers and wine scientists in the world. Having completed his degree at Roseworthy, he worked at one of Australia's best wineries, visited some of the world's best wineries experiencing fifteen vintages worldwide, and spent two years at UC Davis, California, where he completed his Masters. Through all of this, to be guided through wine evaluations and wine making techniques of the great wines by the masters themselves has certainly been a privilege and a wonderful opportunity for him. He therefore is able to draw on a very wide spectrum of ideas, practices, philosophies and experiments. These are encapsulated in his wines.
Hunting down the right varieties in the right vineyard in the right region was the next step. Each variety has been selected on the basis of being able to produce a wine of world class that, in particular, the old vineyards of South Australia are able to produce. Geographical isolation and in part a fluke of human non-intervention have preserved pre-phylloxera vineyards that are more closely linked to the original clones from Europe than anywhere on earth. View all Hewitson Wines
About McLaren ValeView a map of McLaren Vale wineries
McLaren Vale is home to the oldest Australian vineyard, with grapes planted in 1838. It's a coastal area, the Indian Ocean bordering the west, which leads to a cooling factor that prevents the grapes from getting too hot. In all, the climate is a perfect one for the vines.
Notable FactsIn McLaren Vale, there are vines as far as the eye can see. As in other parts of Australia, Shiraz and Grenache are the top grapes of the region, with some Cabernet Sauvignon planted as well. While red rules, whites are able to hold their own here too. With the warm yet reasonable Mediterranean climate, white grapes like Chardonnay, Semillon and even some Sauvignon Blanc grow well. The wines are round and smooth and the producers in the regions are excellent.
About AustraliaLike the United States, which is about the same size, Australia's winemaking regions are huddled into one or two pockets of the country. The state of South Australia, which produces about 60% of the country's wine, also has the most wineries and sub-regions, including McLaren Vale, Clare Valley, Coonawarra and Barossa Valley. New South Wales is home to the Hunter Valley, while the smaller, southern state of Victoria is best known for theYarra Valley. Head way west to the very large state of Western Australia and you'll find the tiny region of Margaret River at the southern tip.
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Alcohol By Volume GuideMost wine ranges from 10-16% alcohol by volume. Some varietals tend to have higher (for example Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon) or lower alcohol levels (Pinot Noir and many white varietals), but there is always some variation from producer to producer. Some wine falls outside of this range, for instance Port weighs in closer to 20%, while Muscat and Riesling are usually a bit below 10%.
Wine Style Guide
Light & Fruity
- Red wines that are more fruit-forward and lighter in tannin and body.
Smooth & Supple
- Medium bodied reds that go down easy, with smooth tannins and supple fruit.
Earthy & Spicy
- Wines where earthy and/or spicy dominate the flavors – typically medium to full body.
Big & Bold
- Full bodied wines that have concentrated fruit and are higher in alcohol and/or tannins. Some need age.