Get the latest Alliance news sent to your inbox - Sign Up to our Newsletter

Thistledown, Gorgeous Old Vine Shiraz, South Australia, Australia, 2021

Product code: 4431
Thistledown, Gorgeous Old Vine Shiraz, 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 Shiraz was all picked from one old vineyard in the Riverland, a property that has been growing grapes since the early soldier settlements.


Fermented using wild yeasts. A short ageing in old French oak followed by bottling young to preserve the hugely aromatic, textural deliciousness that we sought from the outset.

Oak Ageing

Time: Short aging
Type: French Oak
% wine oaked: 100
% new oak: None

Tasting Note

Excited by the response they got from the Gorgeous Grenache, they have taken a similarly left-field take on Shiraz by taking old vines and co-fermenting with a little Zibibbo to make a delicious, but very different Shiraz. On the nose there are peaches, ripe nectarine, wild raspberry and a little spice. The palate is soft and slurpy, the texture silky and any tannins just add a little seasoning – like macerated strawberries and black pepper. Turning a previously undervalued resource into something that is hugely enjoyable and ultimately gorgeous.

Food Matching

Roasted lamb, beef stews and strong hard cheeses.


Jancis Robinson 16 Points
Arresting bottle! Yes indeed – this is gorgeous! Round and sweet with the Muscat of Alexandria (clever alternative name chosen for it) well submerged in the luscious Shiraz. Where grown, I wonder? Not amazingly long but VGV. 16 Points, JR, April 2022.
James Halliday 90 Points
A pulpy and reductively handled, fuller than mid-weighted, easygoing, warm-climate Australian shiraz, with a swirl of whole-berry bubblegum, purple and blue fruits, licorice straps, nori and smoked meat riffs, with plenty of sap. The vibrant florals impart life, rather than any bright acidity per se. I’d drink this on the cooler side. 90 Points, NG(MW), September 2022.
Robert Parkers The Wine Advocate 92 Points
The 2021 Gorgeous Shiraz is bright and light, with aromas of deli meat and star anise, raspberry and pink peppercorns, red apple skins and black humbugs. How utterly gorgeous. Aptly named. 92 Points, EL, September 2022.

Technical Details
Shiraz 87%
Zibibbo 13%
Vegetarian Vegan

Screw cap


Still wine

Case Size:
12 x 75cl