Regions > South Australia > Adelaide Super Zone > Mt. Lofty Ranges Zone > Clare Valley region

: Claymore



Leasingham Rd, Leasingham, 5452

Cellar Door: Daily (10-5)

Ph: (08) 8843 0200

Claymore was established by a couple of doctors in the 1990s.

The first small vineyard, 4 ha of Riesling, Grenache and Shiraz at Leasingham was purchased in 1991.

A second larger vineyard (Shiraz, Merlot and Grenache) at Penwortham was purchased in 1996 and the first commercial wines were released in 1998.

Most of the grapes are sourced from their Leasingham and Penwortham vineyards with some supply from independent growers. The wines are now made by Donna Stephens.

The light-hearted side of the brand is seen in the catchy labels that are tributes to popular artists and bands such as Pink Floyd, U2, the Clash, Lou Reed and Nirvana.

Special thanks to the cellar door staff who dropped off my review notes to my hotel back in Clare when I left them behind.

Avenmore Tastings
The contemporary Claymore cellar door at Leasingham (photo: genxywines)
Tasting Notes

There are three types of Tasting notes:

(W) Notes from the winery (blurbs from bottle)

(GXY) Notes from a GenXY wine reviewer

(G) Notes from GenXY's Tasting events (collective opinions)

Claymore Superstition Reserve Riesling 2017

Purchased: Not ($27)

Drink: 2019 or 2028 if you like it toasty

(GXY) Tasting: Jan 2018, this time it is made by Marnie Roberts, flinty and focussed lime, lemon sorbet with citrus blossom florals and a touch of fennel, talcy with a powdery phenolic spine, orange peel nuanced acidity and good length, not as intense as the 2015 (****1/2)

Claymore Superstition Reserve Riesling 2015

Purchased:  Not ($28)

Drink: 2025+

(GXY) Tasting:  Feb 2016, made by Kerri Thompson, floral and tightly wound lime, pear and green apple, talcy with a powdery phenolic spine and racy orange peel nuanced acidity, excellent balance and length (*****)

Claymore Nirvana Reserve Shiraz 2012

Purchased:  Not ($50)

Drink: 2022

(GXY) Tasting:  Feb 2016, big and plush and plum and boysenberry with anise notes, earthy and full bodied ample charry/cedar/chocolate oak notes, grainy tannins, warm finish from 15.2% alcohol (***1/2)

Claymore Joshua Tree Riesling 2014

Purchased: Not ($18)

Drink: 2016

(GXY) Tasting: Feb 2015, plump, open and succulent showing lime pulp and lemon sherbet with orange blossom and brown spice notes, talcy with bright citrusy acidity with some wet stone on the bone-dry finish, softer mouth feel than the 2013 (***1/2)

Claymore London Calling Merlot 2013

Purchased: Not ($20)

Drink: 2016

(GXY) Tasting: Feb 2015, oaky, ripe and essency plumcake, mulberry and chocolate with eucalypt and tobacco notes, blocky medium bodied palate has some savoury olive counterpoints, with open knit grainy tannins, plenty of charry oak, was early picked to retain the natural acidity in this hot vintage, finishes with some alcohol warmth from the 14.8% alcohol (***)

Claymore Joshua Tree Riesling 2013

Purchased: Not ($18)

Drink: 2015

(GXY) Tasting: Feb 2014, orange blossom nose, good intensity showing lime sherbert and pear with musky spices and cinnamon notes, open, plumpish palate with a slaty powdery phenolic finish, racy grapefruit acidity (***1/2)

Claymore Black Magic Woman Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon 2010

Purchased: Not ($35)

Drink: 2020

(GXY) Tasting: Feb 2013, Gold at Royal Adelaide Wine Show 2012, the first release of a Reserve Cabernet, from an unirrigated single vineyard, perfumed and fairly intense blackcurrant and dark plums with menthol, violet and anise notes, the light char 85% new French oak is fairly assertive and brings roast coffee/cedar and toasty brown spices, grainy oak tannins on the slightly spirity finish, 14.8% alcohol (****)

Claymore Joshua Tree Riesling 2012

Purchased: Not ($18)

Drink: 2014

(GXY) Tasting: Feb 2013, open, early developing style showing lime , lemon and pear with a pleasing range of sweet brown spices, some of the Watervale’s lanolin plumpness on the mid-palate, crisp and minerally lemon rind finish (***1/2)

Claymore London Calling Merlot 2010

Purchased: Not ($20)

Drink: 2015

(GXY) Tasting: Feb 2013, soft and medium bodied blackberry and dark plum with eucalypt, white pepper, mint leaf and tobacco notes, smooth and blocky palate with fine, loose knit tannins (***)

Claymore Joshua Tree Riesling 2011

Purchased: Not ($18)

Drink: 2013

(GXY) Tasting: Feb 2012, perfumed and flavoursome green apple and lime with musk and lavender notes, a little more minerally than usual, chalky lemon sherbert backbone and a wet slate finish, has good length and acid balance although still a little broad for a higher score (***1/2)

Claymore Dark Side of the Moon Shiraz 2010

Purchased: Not ($25)

Drink: 2016

(GXY) Tasting: Feb 2012, soft and ripe blackberry and plum with liquorice, violet and pepper notes, plump and medium-full bodied with earthy undertones, the impact of the handsome mocha/chocolate/cedar /toasted American and US oak has been pulled back a little which is a good thing (***)

Claymore You’ll Never Walk Alone Grenache Mataro Shiraz 2009

Purchased: Not ($18)

Drink: 2014

(GXY) Tasting: Feb 2012, spicy medium bodied blend of 53% Grenache, 33% Mataro and 14% Shiraz, soft and jammy style showing raspberry and prune with musk, menthol and allspice notes, open knit dusty tannins with seasoned oak in the background (***)

Claymore London Calling Merlot 2008

Purchased: Not ($20)

Drink: 2013

(GXY) Tasting: Oct 2009, the admirably controlled ripeness and alcohol (12.3%) has led to a more structured wine than other flabby high alcohol versions in the region, juicy, long and savoury plum , cherry and raspberry with black olive, violet and menthol nuances, light dusting of brown spices, restrained toasty oak and slightly loose knit tannins, should be quite a pleasant food wine (****)

Claymore Nirvana Reserve Shiraz 2006

Purchased: Not ($40)

Drink: 2016

(GXY) Tasting: Oct 2009, unfiltered wine from the Penwortham vineyard, big but savoury showing dark plum, prune and boysenberry with black olive and liquorice features, medium-full bodied, 24 months in French oak brings char, cedar and dark chocolate, chewy grainy tannins, a bit too ripe but has plenty of length and presence (****)

Claymore Joshua Tree Riesling 2009

Purchased: Not ($18)

Drink: 2011

(GXY) Tasting: Oct 2009, the heavy rain of Dec 2008 allowed the vines to survive the January 09 heatwave relatively unscathed, generous and tangy green apple and lime with lemon sherbert and brown spices coming to the fore on the back half, chalky texture with a gentle lemon acid finish (***1/2)

Claymore Graceland Cabernet Sauvignon 2007

Purchased: Not ($20)

Drink: 2014

(GXY) Tasting: Oct 2009, light-medium bodied style (13.1%) showing sweet and ripe blackcurrant and plum with eucalypt and leather notes, earthy and spicy with restrained cedary French oak and firmish dusty tannins, has avoided the pitfalls faced by fuller bodied Cabernets in this challenging vintage (***1/2)

Claymore Whole Lotta Love Rose 2009

Purchased: Not ($18)

Drink: 2010

(GXY) Tasting: Oct 2009, derived from 91% Grenache and 9% Shiraz, raspberry red colour, fresh and off-dry café style showing rose petal and cherry with turkish delight and menthol nuances, chalky finish has a just a trace of residual sweetness (***)

Claymore Purple Rain Sauvignon Blanc Semillon 2009

Purchased: Not ($18)

Drink: 2010

(GXY) Tasting: Oct 2009, blend of 89% Sauvignon Blanc and 11% Semillon with some Adelaide Hills input, light bodied showing lemon, pear and tropical fruit with cut grass and snow pea nuances, fairly thin apart from some mid-palate lees aspects, crisp lime acids (***)

Claymore Dark Side of the Moon Shiraz 2007

Purchased: Not ($24)

Drink: 2014

(GXY) Tasting: May 2009, quite ripe and full bodied blackberry, mulberry and liquorice with a touch of prune and eucalpypt, there are some greenish acids suggesting an extended hang-time (vines shut down in extreme heat), plenty of spicy vanilla, cedar and dark chocolate oak (***)