The Austin’s Woolshed Series is an exclusive, cellar door-only release that embodies the essence of our winemaking. As many of you know, our cellar door is housed in a restored 1950s Woolshed and is at the heart of our craft, therefore, we felt it was only fitting to create a series of wines named after this building. True craftsmanship will be unveiled in our preservative free Shiraz and our aim is for the The Woolshed series to showcase small- batch, hand-crafted wine that honours the environment, soil, topography, and climate of our spectacular Moorabool Valley location.
Part of our planning for this exciting wine was to produce our own label that supported a local artist. For the first wine in the Woolshed Series, we have commissioned the well known artist Natalie Anderson to create a piece of artwork that reflects the cellar door views. Natalie has produced a stunning painting that illustrates the view from the cellar door towards the picturesque landscape of the vineyard. The view is beautifully composed within the panoramic window frame of the cellar door and the inclusion of a still life cluster of vases sitting on the bar in the foreground give a sense of scale, depth and realism. The painting makes you feel like you are standing inside our cellar door.
The winemaking process
It is well known that the weather can play a significant role in shaping the Austins winemaking journey, and this year was no exception. In April, we embarked on our Shiraz harvest and over the course of three separate picks, we managed to finish our Shiraz block. One of the highlights from these picks was preparing the batch of selected Shiraz grapes which would have a slightly different journey for our Woolshed new series.
These grapes were fermented in a 5-tonne fermenter. This fermentation process revealed a lovely bright raspberry and plum character, which we absolutely adored. After this stage, the grapes were pressed into a full stainless steel tank. The end goal for this batch was to produce the first release of our Woolshed series – natural (or NATUREL!) Shiraz with no added preservatives. We wanted this wine to truly showcase the purity of fruit and the freshness that our vineyard has consistently delivered over the years.
The making of our first ‘naturel shiraz’ from The Woolshed Series involved an intricate winemaking process. We know you’re not all winemakers, but we believe that understanding the process adds an extra layer of appreciation to this new wine that we know you will thoroughly enjoy.
Harvest & Fermentation
Harvested with Care: The pick for this series began with the gentle and meticulous harvest of our Shiraz grapes. A selecter harvester machine was used, which not only picked the grapes but also delicately removed the stems right there in the vineyard. This process ensured that only the best whole berries and juice were harvested.
The next stop for our precious harvest was a 5-tonne open stainless steel fermenter. The berries and juice were tipped directly into this vessel, ready to begin their transformation into the rich Austins Shiraz that we love.
Wild Fermentation: This is where the magic happens for this Woolshed Series. There are no additives and no shortcuts. We let nature take the lead. The wild fermentation process was allowed to unfold over 10 days. It’s a magical and complex dance of yeast and sugars, and it’s this natural process that infuses our wine with its unique character.
During these 10 days, our team gently plunged the fermenting grapes twice a day, to extract the rich flavours and colours that make our Shiraz stand out.
Filtration & Bottling
The Art of Patience – After the wild yeast had finished fermentation, the wine was pressed gently into a full stainless steel tank. Malolactic fermentation was completed naturally in tank, before carefully racked into another full stainless steel tank. For the next three weeks, our wine was chilled to a frosty 4 degrees for stabilisation and microbial protection. In keeping with our philosophy of creating the most authentic and natural wine, our Shiraz was filtered whilst fresh. This gentle filtration process ensures that the wine maintains its clarity and purity without sacrificing any of its natural character. And here’s the pièce de résistance: our Shiraz was bottled with absolutely no added sulfur or preservatives. For this Woolshed Series Shiraz, our aim is to let the true essence of the wine shine through, unadulterated – natural.
We hope this glimpse into the winemaking process for our first natural shiraz has deepened your appreciation for the care and craftsmanship that goes into every bottle here at Austins. With no added preservatives, this wine offers instant enjoyment, spotlighting pure fruit essence from the Moorabool Valley region. Tapenade olives, blackberry, and white pepper notes resonate on the palate. Our experienced foodie staff suggest that you enjoy this wine with Teriyaki Salmon, Butter Chicken or a slow cooked ragu.
Thank you for being a part of our wine-loving community, and we can’t wait for you to experience the exquisite results of this fabulous new series.