Yangarra Estate Vineyard Ironheart Shiraz, McLaren Vale
The Ironheart is so named for the reddish ironstone gravel soil in the middle of the Blewitt Springs vineyard. Unlike the western side of the vineyard, ironstone is all but exposed save for some small patches of sandy clay or loam.
There are 100 hectares of vineyards at Yangarra divided into 35 individual blocks. The fruit for the Ironheart is sourced from Block 18, a mere 1.8 hectares of what the winery describes as their ‘most elite Shiraz’ vines and produces wines of power, elegance and longevity. So very clearly inspired by the wines of the Rhône.
Hand-picked, 75% destemmed and berry-sorted, 25% whole bunches, wild-fermented, on lees in French oak (35% new) for 15 months then a barrel selection to showcase the characteristic ironstone it grows in. A magnificent wine with length to its stride and a lightness of foot.
99 points, Wine Companion (February 2020)
This is beautiful, held to medium weight but with a cornucopia of spice an absolute and dominating feature. Garam masala, Chinese five spice, paprika in there and a dash of white pepper, it’s hauntingly scented and flavours are fresh albeit doused in this souk. Ripe and dark fruit characters, a touch of rum n raisin, dried plum and earthy berries. Shale-like minerality here too. Magnificent length unfurling over layers of fine, silty tannin and cool, faintly herbal acidity. Shapeless but tight, lacy and yet stacked with flavour, this is such a great shiraz.
95 points, The Wine Front (July 2020)
Very youthful, bold purple/red colour. The bouquet is smoky/char-oaky and slightly reductive, savoury, with traces of ironstone and graphite or coal-dust. Lots of character. The palate is full-bodied and youthful, fresh, bright and attractive. Chewy tannins persist long on the follow-through. A long-term keeper.
93 points, The Real Review (July 2020)
Hints of cedar and vanilla accent cherries and raspberries on the nose of the 2017 Ironheart Shiraz. It showcases the vintage's cooler character in its red fruit, but doesn't lack for ripeness or power. It's full-bodied, supple and velvety on the palate, with great persistence on the mouthwatering finish. Stylistically, it's a hypothetical blend of the 2015 and 2016 vintages—and a nicely balanced Shiraz for drinking over the next decade-plus.
94 points, Wine Advocate (August 2020)
A very intense nose with instantly complex aromas of dried spices, dried wood, licorice and sappy blackberries and plums. There’s a direct delivery of strong, fine tannin and a core of succulent, redder plum and berry flavors. Concentrated and bedded in deep at the finish.
94 points, JamesSuckling.com (May 2020)