Australians are an unpretentious mob and shooing flies is about as complicated as it gets when dealing with life's distractions. 'Work hard but take time to savor each day' is the national ethos - an honest approach to life that is reflected in our wines. Our wines are crafted from hand-selected vineyard sites that are rich in character and demonstrate true varietal pedigree. These are wines that show Australia at its best.
Shoofly was founded in 2005 and our winemaking team is led by one of Australia's best – Ben Riggs. As a native of McLaren Vale, he has been crafting some of the region's finest for more than two decades. His vision is clear: no flabby wines, no raisins and leave the oak for the trees! The team brings decades of winemaking and tasting experience to the table, so they’ve figured out how to make a wine that will drink well to the last drop. These are fleshy, balanced wines bursting with vibrant, delicious fruit.
Riggs makes wildly delicious Shiraz from McLaren Vale’s temperate maritime climate, which offers reds of rich, ripe fruit character and great acid balance. Langhorne Creek, a “cool desert” situated on South Australia’s Fleurieu Peninsula, produces soft, fruit-driven Shiraz, which performs admirably. Each vintage provides Riggs the opportunity to source for the best Aussie Shiraz available.
| Wine & Spirits Magazine
Wine & Spirits Magazine
| “There’s solid value here." - Vinous
Vinous | “There’s solid value here."
| Halliday Wine Companion
91 POINTS/#51 in Wine Spectator’s TOP 100 Wines of 2009
“Polished, plush and generous with its cinnamon and citrus peel-accented plum and cherry flavors, hinting at roasted meat on the smooth finish.” - Wine Spectator, November 2009
TOP 125 NEW WORLD VALUES UNDER $20
Wine Spectator 2009
"Fresh and lively, with a smoky edge to the blackberry and cherry flavors.” - Wine Spectator, October 2007
| Robert Parker Wine Advocate
Robert Parker’s The Wine Advocate
“Key to Shoofly’s success is in the management of the vineyards enabling Ben Riggs to deliver consistent quality.” - Wine Spectator, December 2009
Ben Riggs, Shoofly’s tenacious winemaker, is a South Australian native who knows his stuff, and where to get it. His roster of grape growers is one of the most sought after contact lists in the country, meaning the grapes come from a “who's who” of Australian growers and viticultural neighborhoods.
In addition to his 22 vintages in Australia, Ben has presided over a further eight overseas, including Napa Valley, Bordeaux, Greece, Italy and the South of France which gives Ben a broad appreciation of wine styles and winemaking practices.
Ben now operates as consultant winemaker to a select group of principally McLaren Vale labels. These include Penny’s Hill, The Black Chook, Woop Woop, Pertaringa, Geoff Hardy, Zonte’s Footstep, Jip Jip Rocks, Journey’s End and the highly acclaimed Tatiarra wines from the Heathcote region of Victoria. His own winemaking venture is under the Mr. Riggs label.
And, yes. Ben does have a vineyard. Located at Kangarilla on the edge of the McLaren Vale designated region, “Piebald Gully” is a recently planted patch producing fine grade Shiraz, Viognier and Petit Verdot from low-yielding, hand-tended vines.
A graduate of Roseworthy in 1985, Ben has made a major contribution to regional wine industry activities having served 10 years as a board member of McLaren Vale Winemakers Inc. Three of those years saw Ben in the role of Chairman. He also chaired the McLaren Vale Wine Show over a five-year period.
This region’s temperate maritime climate is created by its bordering hills to the east and ocean to the west. Warm days and cool nights create a perfect environment for maintaining great acid balance with rich, ripe fruit. Many varieties thrive here, but Rhone varietals (Shiraz/Syrah, Grenache, Mourvèdre, Marsanne and Viognier) are the standouts.
Cooling breezes off Lake Alexandria and southerlies rolling in from the nearby Southern Ocean temper this region’s warm summer days. Vineyards are planted on a natural flood plain, whose deep, fertile soils produce soft, rich, fruit-driven wines. Traditionally Cabernet Sauvignon and Shiraz have held court, though Chardonnay, Verdelho and Grenache have stepped up in recent times.