Dan's Blog


Friday, March 23, 2018

I have heard of wineries being involved with local artists or local food providores, but never before had I heard of a winery being involved with a famous football club at the other end of the earth - Liverpool England.

CLAYMORE WINES in the Clare Valley have always done things a little bit differently to the mainstream, with their wines being named after famous songs such as their “DARK SIDE OF THE MOON” SHIRAZ.

On Saturday, February 24, in the Clare Valley they had a real RED day which I was invited to. It was RED in every respect:

RED because they served invited guests some fabulous red wines – their motto is “a PASSION for GREAT reds”.

RED because it was a day for Liverpool (the Reds) Football Club supporters from around the country to come and have a sensational day at the winery.

And even more RED because their “Red’s hero” the incomparable Liverpool player, Robbie Fowler, was there not only to please the fanatical fans, but also to launch a new edition of Claymore’s signature wine.

The CLAYMORE SIGNATURE SERIES ‘ROBBIE FOWLER’ 2014 RESERVE SHIRAZ, is a cracker of a wine! It has a great depth of vibrant-red colour, alluring plum and vanillin oak aromas with lovely hint of spice. On the palate it has a big mouthful of delightful, fleshy Shiraz flavours wrapped around a central spine of steely, tight flavours, which shows on the finish. This wine will continue to evolve and grow for many years to become sensational. Many of the attendee’s bought a bottle (or more) of this superb wine and had it signed by the great man himself – a unique treat!

While I thoroughly enjoyed all of the wines I tasted on the day, starting with the CLAYMORE ‘THIS IS ANFIELD’ SPARKLING PINOT CHARDONNAY 2013, the other wines (other than the fabulous ROBBIE FOWLER RESERVE SHIRAZ already reviewed above) that really stood out for me were the:

CLAYMORE ‘YOU’LL NEVER WALK ALONE’ 2016 GRENACHE SHIRAZ MATARO: A wine which was deep-purple/almost black in colour. Had beautiful plummy aromas with a big dollop of vanillin oak and a gob-smacking mouthful of divine flavours coupled with a very tight, lingering finish. This gorgeous wine needs either rich food to accompany it or patience while it develops and rounds out over the next few years.

CLAYMORE YNWA ‘THE BOOT ROOM’ 2013 SHIRAZ:  Here, winemaker Marnie Roberts, has created a stunning assembly of individual Shiraz parcels, to create a truly superb wine. It is so elegant, classy and smooth but with the characteristic Claymore structural, steel backbone.  Close to divine now, it will continue to develop over the next few years to become breathtakingly awesome!

CLAYMORE’s adventurous spirit has also been extended into emerging grape varieties, with the CLAYMORE ‘BLACKBIRD’ 2016 SANGIOVESE (Italian) and the CLAYMORE ‘THE MISEDUCATION OF CARISSA MAJOR’ TEMPRANILLO 2016 (Spanish).  Great examples of what these sensational Mediterrenean varieties can produce here in Australia.

The ’BLACKBIRD’ 2016 SANGIOVESE is light and bright in colour. It has lively fruity aromas and a smooth, rich, juicy mouthful of flavour finished-off with the good, crisp, acidity that the variety is so well known for. This wine lingers well on the finish and is an ideal food wine at the moment. Absolutely brilliant with pizza or pasta dishes.

The ‘THE MISEDUCATION OF CARISSA MAJOR’ TEMPRANILLO 2016 has gorgeous medium-depth purple/red colour. It has spicy, slightly savoury aromas with plenty of herbs. On the palate it is still very tight but ubber tasty, smooth and the delicious, slightly savoury finish lingers well. A great wine!

Quite unsurprisingly the trip back to town on the bus was a tad more noisy and rowdy that the trip up.

A big thanks to the gang at CLAYMORE’s!  Not only for a brilliant day of great wines and food, but also for demonstrating to the industry how successfully one can turn a passion (Liverpool Football Club) into a brilliant piece of marketing, to make one stand out in the crowd and contribute to society at the same time. A truly brilliant effort and example for others.

So the question then is: What do you have in your history/background that you can leverage into your wine business to create such an amazing point of difference like CLAYMORE’s have? Think about it!!!