Head Wines
'The Contrarian' Shiraz 2016*

Head Wines the Contrarian Shiraz

Head Wines 'The Contrarian' Shiraz 2016

The Daily Drop Panel continue to be impressed by the wines from Head Wines in the Barossa Valley and the 'Contrarian' Shiraz is no exception. Rich yet medium -bodied this is a full flavoured Shiraz that is a perfect balance of all of the elements. Just enough French oak to add texture with flavours that include black jelly beans, this is an excellent Barossa Shiraz. Worth decanting.

Head Wines 'The Contrarian' Shiraz 2016

Region - Barossa Valley.

Variety - Shiraz. 

Style/Palate - medium-bodied.

Cellaring - Up to 2025, 10 years.

Winemaking - Fermentation was cool and long with the use of some whole bunches. Foot crushing and pigeage extended the contact time with grape skins and stems which resulted in more structure and tannin weight. 12 months maturation in 50% new French oak barrels, the wine was then bottled unfined and unfiltered under stelvin capsule.

Head Wines 'The Contrarian' Shiraz 2016

"From a 54yo biodynamic site. Includes 10% mataro; 20% whole bunch, open fermented, wild yeast, 17 months in an old 2250l foudre and French oak puncheons (18% new oak for the blend). Excellent bright crimson; pepper, charred red peppers, blue and red fruit, and an array of spices. The medium-bodied palate, the finely detailed tannins and the fresh acidity all deliver a very satisfying shiraz. As of 2017, The Contrarian will be a blend of sites, this the last single vineyard offering." 95 Points, Jane Faulkner, The Wine Companion 2018 (on the 2016 vintage).

"The oldest vineyard source for the Head Wines – 54 year old vines in Greenock – but also the least expensive. Includes 10% Mataro in the mix. Grilled steak with pepper, herbs de Provence, almost a violet thing going on, black fruits, iron filings. Medium bodied, distinctly ferrous and meaty, almost bloody, seasoned with salt and herbs, streaks of gummy tannin, clean acidity, all that meat, blackness and herb on the finish. Dare I say it, the Rhône expression of Shiraz from Heady?", 93 Points, Gray Walsh, The Wine Front.

"An annual endeavour to express a single Barossan site in a contrarian fashion, challenging preconceptions of the region. One's first impression is that of smoked meat, black cherry fruit, cinnamon oak and a ferruginous core of bramble, anise and spice melded to sinewy, gritty tannins, the legacy of judicious extraction across a wild yeast ferment and 20% stem retention, before ageing in large format French oak. The wine flies a banner of carnal wildness, yet it is clean, pure of fruit and regional voice.", 95 Points, James Halliday, The Wine Companion 2017 (on the 2015 vintage).


  • This is a rich, robust yet medium- bodied Barossa Shiraz.
  • Made in very small batches - single vineyard wine.
  • Flavoursome Shiraz - black pepper and liquorice.
  • Delicious with roast duck or pork.
  • Will cellar for up to 10 years.