Wine Advocate Review

Posted 13 March 2014

2012 The Hedonist Shiraz

Review by Lisa Perrotti-Brown
Rating: 90+ 

"Deep garnet-purple in color the 2012 Shiraz is intensely scented of mocha, black plum preserves and blackberry tart with suggestions of licorice and bacon fat. Medium to full-bodied with mouth-filling black fruit and mocha flavors, it has a great backbone of firm, grainy tannins and lively acid before finishing long. Drink it now to 2019+."

Wine Advocate, Issue 211, Feb 2014

5-star Rating

Posted 26 July 2013

Australian Wine Companion 2014 Edition - James Halliday

Hedonist Wines has again been awarded 5-stars in James Halliday's 2014 Australian Wine Companion


  • 2010 Hedonist Shiraz - 94 points
  • 2010 Hedonist Reserve Shiraz - 94 points (Pre-release)
  • 2012 Hedonist Sangiovese Rosé - 90 points


2013 Vintage Report

Posted 09 July 2013


2013-03-13 14.10.31


Fruit for The Hedonist is grown biodynamically on our estate grown vineyard situated in the Willunga foothills, McLaren Vale. Warm summer days are cooled by evening sea breezes from St Vincent’s Gulf, which lies a close proximity to the West. The soil is rich loam over clay with patches of underlying limestone, giving our wines a rich and fullness of pallet.

McLaren Vale experienced its average winter rain. Early summer was relatively mild with generally cooler nights. These conditions were ideal for good natural acidity across the board. Late summer brought with it higher temperatures, which in turn pushed the vintage slightly forward, culminating in a more condensed vintage.

2013 compares very well with 2012 in McLaren Vale. Our reds from both vintages are full and well structured. Quality in general is considered very good to excellent. While it is difficult to pick a standout variety from the season, we are particularly pleased with the Shiraz and are very excited with our, coming of age, ‘small batch’ Tempranillo. 

All of our reds have completed secondary (malolactic) fermentation and have been racked and put to bed in French and American barrels. 

The Hedonist 2013 ‘small batch’ Sangiovese Rosé has been bottled and is about to be released. It is looking very smart, with wonderful acidity and length, and exhibits a delightful apricot kernel and strawberry aromas.

There will be some exciting wines to come out of the 2013 vintage.                   


Kimberly Cooter (neé Clappis) - Winemaker




2010 Hedonist Shiraz makes Jancis Robinson's Top 100 Reds

Posted 10 December 2012

Jancis Robinson, 8 December 2012,

2010 Hedonist Shiraz makes Jancis Robinson's Top 100 Reds (2012), selected from over 10,000 wines world wide.


"Polished, fun, pure. Classic glossy Shiraz from South Australia's McLaren Vale. Spicy and not too potent. Dry finish. Biodynamically grown; attractively labelled. What's not to like?"

Jancis Robinson


For full article click the link:

James Halliday, Australian Wine Companion Newsletter, February 22, 2012

2011 The Hedonist Sangiovese Rose

Rating 94 Drink To 2014

Trophy McLaren Vale Wine Show '11 for Best Rose a handy introduction. Pale salmon-pink; the bouquet of wild flowers and spice, the palate follwoing on seamlessly, the lingering spiced cherry flavours needing no sweetness. Classy wine. Scewcap.

James Halliday, Australian Wine Companion, 2010 Edition

The Hedonist McLaren Vale Shiraz 2006, A rich, full-flavoured, medium- to full-bodied wine with a supple texture and mouthfeel to the mix of blackberry, dark chocolate and vanilla oak, the tannins are ripe and soft. Scewcap. 14 alc. Rating 93 Drink To 2021  $19

Who Said Pigs Can’t Fly?

The Hedonist Shiraz chosen to be served on British Airways Business Class.
Last year we learnt that pigs could fly - provided it was Business class on British Airways, with the prominent "pig" label of the Hedonist Shiraz being the airline's pouring red.

The worldwide swine flu epidemic has translated to a worldwide swine wine expansion; British Airways now intend to increase the wine's spread from 25 per cent of its international routes to 100 per cent - yes, all four corners of the globe. Good news indeed for both the international globe trotter and the now famous flying pig of hedonism.

The Hedonist Shiraz 2005 McLaren Vale

8 Jan 2008 by Jancis Robinson

I may well lead a sheltered life but this is the first wine I have ever seen so obviously labelled ‘biodynamic’ . That’s in big letters on the back label. On the front is the thoroughly appealing name of The Hedonist Shiraz 2005 McLaren Vale plus, inexplicably (to me), a fine pen and ink drawing of a pig, not unlike that of Fergus Henderson’s St John restaurant in London that is so proud of its ‘nose to tail’ food. This is nose to glass wine.

The name and alcohol level on the label (14.5%) might suggest something thoroughly over the top but this wine is far from that. The hedonism comes from the pure pleasure of sipping this delightfully approachable and civilised Shiraz from the Winterfold vineyard in the hills above Willunga in the southern, more ocean-cooled sector of McLaren Vale. Far from a syrup or tough tincture, this wine tingles with life and manages to be beautifully balanced for current drinking while not being sweetened up or vapid. It has that glossy McLaren Vale ripeness with some real finesse. About a quarter of the must was run off to finish fermentation in barrels. The majority of oak was new and French, supplemented by 30% one year-old American oak barrels.

The maker of The Hedonist is Walter Clappis who owned the Ingoldby winery for 20 years during which time it had a pretty glorious record on the Australian show circuit. He claims to be the only winemaker from McLaren Vale to have won the famous Dan Murphy Trophy three times, and is a leading exponent of biodynamic viticulture – which can’t have been that easy in McLaren Vale, I can’t help thinking.  Nowadays he is substantially helped by his winemaker daughter Kimberly.

According to this wine is on sale in Australia for Aus$18.35 a bottle. The UK importer is ABS Agencies (contact and in October 2008 (!) they at long last achieved a major listing: Waitrose, at £8.99.

One other thing impresses me about this screwcapped wine: there is such a shortage of decent wine names, with producers coming up with successively more ridiculous abstract nouns that it seems particularly clever to have nabbed a name as appealing as The Hedonist. Pig or no pig.