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Thistledown, Cunning Plan Shiraz, McLaren Vale, South Australia, Australia, 2021

Product code: 3484
Thistledown, Cunning Plan Shiraz, McLaren Vale, South Australia, Australia, 2021

Producer Profile

Masters of Wine, Giles Cooke & Fergal Tynan, founded Thistledown Wines in 2010 after discovering iconic vineyard sites in the McLaren Vale, Barossa Valley and Adelaide Hills.

They make hand-made, small batch wines that perfectly illustrate the benefits of great sites and intelligent, minimalist winemaking.


The beautiful region of McLaren Vale is bounded by the Gulf to the West and the various ranges to the East and North. Geologically one of the most diverse regions on earth, it has long been the home to some of Australia’s finest expressions of Shiraz. The fruit comes from the Moray Park vineyard in the McLaren Flat sub-region. Low yielding and ultra-intense, they handle the fruit gently to capture the delicious berry fruit character, overlaid with subtle wood-spice.


Winemaking is simple with The Cunning Plan. Take perfectly balanced fruit, pick, gently crush to preserve whole berries and allow to soak for 4 days prior to a wild fermentation. Wild fermented and then pressed to French oak only, with either no new oak or only a small percentage used depending on vintage.

Oak Ageing

Time: 10 Months
Type: French 300 Litre
% wine oaked: 100
% new oak: 10

Tasting Note

Great depth of ripe plum and blackberry fruit flavours. A full bodied wine with a succulent palate, lively spices and fine velvety tannins.

Food Matching

Heart stews, Asian hotpots, cold meat cuts.


James Halliday 93 Points
The poise immaculate, attesting to the quality of 2021. Suave, fresh and floral. Blue fruits, a riff on dried seaweed with a sluice of white-pepper-doused freshness towing fine length. A lip-smacking drink, uncannily reminiscent of top cru beaujolais, so mellifluous the feel. 93 Points, NG(MW), September 2022.
Robert Parkers The Wine Advocate 92 Points
After tasting fifty or so big, extracted, heavily oaked Shiraz, this 2021 Cunning Plan Shiraz is like a breath of fresh air. It's mineral, bloody, midweight and spicy, with a skein of fine saline acid that curls through the palate. The red fruit is the very definition of buoyant, and it brings a plume of brine, iodine and ferrous to the fore. It's very good and gets an "A" for style. And it's classily handled. 92 Points, EL, September 2022.

Technical Details
Shiraz 100%
Vegetarian Vegan

Screw cap


Still wine

Case Size:
6 x 75cl

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