By Amy Looker – editor National Liquor News
After more than a decade in the making, McGuigan Wines has unveiled its super-premium red wine, The Philosophy.
The 2010 limited release wine is made from a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Shiraz in a traditional Claret style, which chief winemaker Neil McGuigan says has set the bar higher for the winery across its entire portfolio.
“When I got back into business in 2004 I spent some time going round to our vineyards, speaking to the winemakers, and I said, 'How hard is it to make a $10 bottle of wine?' and they said, 'Given all the fancy winemaking gear we’ve got, it ain’t that hard to make a $10 bottle of wine'… and I responded, exactly,” McGuigan told TheShout.
“And that was the problem. Complacency will set in because we’ve got all the gear and it shouldn’t be that hard.
"To make a $150 bottle of wine you need, of course, fruit, but you also need everything else going for you too.
"And if you put good quality wine into a system with that culture, there is a chance to make a $150 bottle of wine, and what happens along the way is you lift the bar in everything else that you do; a $10 wine starts to taste like a $12 bottle of wine and so on.
"And that’s what the process behind The Philosophy has been about – it’s to lift the bar with everything that we do.”
McGuigan said that he spent 10 years developing The Philosophy, which inevitably led to creation of new tiers within the McGuigan Wines portfolio.
“Look at our biggest selling range, which is our Black Label range. I’m very proud of it, and we’ve come a long way with over-delivering at that price point.
"We’ve established other wines within our portfolio as we make our way up to The Philosophy – starting with Founders Series at about $20 a bottle; we have The Shortlist at $25; we’ve got Hand Made at $45; we have Farms, which is a big Barossa Shiraz at $70; and now we have The Philosophy at $150.
“We’ve come a long way and had ranges to develop as we’ve gone through this process of creating a super-premium red. What we’ve done for our brand and our company, along with the Australian wine industry, is something that we’re very proud of,” concludes McGuigan.
McGuigan Wines 2010 The Philosophy is a limited release, available from June at selected retailers, McGuigan’s Yaldara cellar door and the international duty free channel.