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The New Barossa
Part 6: Tin Shed

Tin Shed? It's a lie. These remarkable wines are not made in a tin shed, but rather a solidly built stone barn, albeit one that is rather bare and rustic. We’re still out in the Eden Valley here, which at this time of year, as winter gives way to spring, has a beautiful stillness and ruggedness to it.

This is a joint venture between Andrew Wardlaw (right), who in a previous life was a viticulturist working with Henschke, and Peter Clarke, chef/owner of Vintners restaurant in Angaston. They starting making wines together in 1998. Andrew has travelled a bit – including spells in Burgundy, Alsace and the Northern Rhône – and seems to have a clear idea of the sorts of wines he wants to make. They’re quite different to the traditional big, ripe, chocolatey, rather oaky reds that the Barossa has made its name with. Instead the emphasis is more on elegance and definition. Andrew is non-interventionist and the wines are made using natural yeast ferments and unobtrusive oak influence.

I tried through some barrel samples. Once again the influence of site was emphasized: different bits of the Eden and Barossa make wines that do taste different. The 2004s tasted here were fantastic, and I’m looking forward to see the results when the wines are bottled. I reckon I’ll be buying some.


First, a Grenache 2004 from Moppa, the coolest part of the Barossa. It has a gingery, spicy nose which is aromatic and expressive with lovely pure, spicy fruit. A hit.

Second, a Mourvèdre 2004 from Moppa. Massively lively, taut and spicy with a drying mouthfeel. Vivid and expressive with good spicy structure. Fantastic.

Third, an Eden Valley Shiraz 2004 has deep colour and lively, aromatic fruit. Very expressive, again.

A blend of all three has lovely aromatics, nicely defined red fruits and good structure.

2004 Melting pot component. Bright, forward and aromatic with lovely defined fruit character. Nice spicy structure, too.

The next 2004 is a Cabernet Franc with some Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Shiraz. Remarkably vivid intense fruit with a bit of herbaceousness in the background. Very intense, tannic and delicious.

Cabernet Franc 2004 from Fechners (growers near Moculta, which is the warmest bit of the Eden Valley). Vivid, full and quite alcoholic – apparently picked a week late.

Shiraz 2004 from Fechners. Vivid, intense and aromatic with spicy complexity. Bold and rich. Very nice stuff.

Moppa Shiraz 2004 from old oak. Inky dark and aromatic. Vivid, intense with high acid: lots of pure fruit.

Springton Shiraz 2004 (very high up, in a rain shadow). Very aromatic spicy nose – perfumed. Very clean and expressive with spicy fruit on the palate. Ripe but taut, with a spicy finish.

Mourvèdre/Shiraz/Grenache 2003 (blended in cask)
Very expressive with lovely spicy, structure. Firm, taut red fruits dominate. Not a showy wine, but beautiful structure. Very good/excellent 92/100

Single Wire Shiraz 2003 (blended in cask)
Lovely fine aromatic fruit on the nose. Quite pure. The palate is expressive with lovely structure and some spiciness on the finish. Really impressive quality of fruit with some elegance. Very good/excellent 93/100

Finally, a bottled wine tried a day later.

Tin Shed Single Wire Shiraz 2001
Very deep colour. Intense, bright aromatic nose of pure red fruits. The palate has pure primary red fruits with lovely elegance and dry, firm tannins. Savoury with good acid. Quite sensational stuff. Very good/excellent 94/100

wines available in the UK from The Cellar Door and Bordeaux Index

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