The wines of Kay Brothers   
Impressive reds from this historic McClaren Vale winery

kay brothers block 6

This is a historical property in the McLaren Vale, and is the oldest winery in the region still in founding family hands. The Amery vineyard was purchased by Herbert and Frederick Kay back in 1890, and the first wines were released in 1898.

block 6 vine

The focus here is on red wines, made from the 22 hectare Amery vineyard, and the most famous wine is the Shiraz from Block 6, planted back in 1892. It's made using traditional techniques, including the original fermenters and basket press. The Shiraz is matured in large format oak of 5400 litres, as well as some in barrels.

duncan kennedy

Of late, Grenache has become a focus. 'There's a lot more effort going into single varietal Grenache now,' says winemaker Duncan Kennedy (above). 'We're a bit cooler than the Barossa. It's very drought tolerant, and we give it a bit of dappled light. In the winery we don't give it too much oxygen or oak.'

Old fermenters with a basket press on rails for ease of filling


Kay Brothers Basket Pressed Grenache 2015 McLaren Vale, Australia
Supple and sweet with a nice fresh, green supple edge to the red fruits. Rounded and supple with nice sweetness. Has a bit of tannic bit, bit overall it is an easy wine. 91/100

Kay Brothers Griffon's Key Grenache 2015 McLaren Vale, Australia
Ripe, sweet and concentrated with bold, lush blackberry fruit. Silky and peppery with lovely fruit and a hint of ginger. Very smooth and pure. 92/100

Kay Brothers Ironmonger Shiraz Cabernet 2014 McLaren Vale, Australia
Fresh floral aromatics here. Ripe, smooth, textural palate with a saline edge. So textural and pure and slight chalkiness. Very lush and fine with real finesse. Ripe, but elegant. 94/100

Kay Brothers Basket Pressed Shiraz 2014 McLaren Vale, Australia
Floral, expressive nose with a meaty, peppery edge to the bright blackcurrant fruit. There's a distinctive spiciness here with some green hints under the sweet black fruits. There's a hint of olive, too. 90/100

Kay Brothers Hillside Shiraz 2013 McLaren Vale, Australia
This is based on Block 4, planted in the 1960s, plus a bit of Block 6. Ripe, sweet and lush with liqueur-like black cherry and blackberry fruit. Has a salty, meaty, olive edge. Ripe with structure, and overall pretty lush. 92/100

Kay Brothers Block 6 Shiraz 2010 McLaren Vale, Australia
Concentrated, intense and rich with ripe olives, some spice and some meat. There's a bit of pepper here. Generous and richly textured with good concentration and intensity. Very ripe but has lots of personality. 92/100

Kay Brothers Block 6 Shiraz 2015 McLaren Vale, Australia (barrel sample)
Vivid, dark, intense and fresh with a salty edge and nice definition. All puncheons (500 litres) here. Lovely wine. 93-95/100


Brash Higgins
Dodgy Brothers
Kay Brothers
Fall From Grace

Wines tasted 07/17 
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