The Tasting Panel magazine

August 2012

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b The Shingleback 2010 Davey Estate Cabernet Sauvignon. IMPORTS OF IMPORTANCE efore Australian critter labels came into vogue, a vineyard in the McLaren Vale region named its wine after a stump-tailed skink. "How do you name an Australian wine in the 1990s?" asks Shingleback owner Kym Davey, who started the brand with his brother, John. At the time, Australia was known for Crocodile Dundee, kangaroos and koala bears. "Australian culture says if you include the word kangaroo or koala, it's like 'Are you joking? That is crass,'" Davey says. So Davey and his brother sought a name that fi t well internationally and in the domestic market. They chose a cherished Australian reptile called the shingleback. "It translates well domestically, and yet it has a story internationally," he says. With Precept Wine as its American importer, Shingleback is poised to compete on-premise with its Shiraz and Cabernet Sauvignon, especially the D Block Reserve series: lovely, soft, complex wines with harmonious balance. Customers have keyed in on the signifi cant ageability in these wines, especially the "single vine- yard" D Block. The Shingleback D Block Reserve Shiraz is complex and harmonious. in New York As Australian wine has taken a hit in recent years, losing market share to South American imports, Shingleback serves as a subtle reminder that the Aussies are still making very good wines—and ones that still have an impact on restaurant patrons. After sipping the Shingleback 2010 Davey Estate Cabernet Sauvignon, Sommelier Kristin Beckler, who manages the wine list for New York's hottest steakhouse, Del Frisco's, simply says, "Oh, this is beautiful." Australian Kym Davey, owner of Shingleback Vineyards, started the company in the 1990s with his brother, John. Their vines are approaching 15 years old, with the youngest being 12 years old. "It's an interesting debate—old versus new vines. We've got some very old vines that rarely make our premium wines," Davey says. "Maybe the soil has something to do with it, but a lot of it is management and trellising." Adam Coremin, Vice President of Fine Wines for Precept Wine, had a barbecue the Saturday before this photo was taken. His guests sipped the Shingleback Shiraz until there was no more. "The acid keeps you wanting more," he says. "The Shingleback Shiraz is a well-crafted wine." SHINGLEBACK IS A REMINDER THAT AUSTRALIAN WINES STILL MATTER story and photos by Fred Minnick august 2012 / the tasting panel / 93

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