WayWood Wines is the creation of UK native Andrew Wood, a former sommelier, and his Australian wife Lisa, a pharmacist by trade but culinary creative at heart.
After leaving the restaurant scene to work vintages in Portugal, Italy, the UK and the Granite Belt, Andrew decided it was time to pursue his personal winemaking ambitions. The couple went searching for the perfect environment in which to create the wine styles they had enjoyed in their European travels, plus those they had talked and dreamt about.
In 2004, Lisa and Andrew decided McLaren Vale was the place they’d call home.
“The region’s diversity, community and history have all added new elements as we, and our wines, continue to evolve,” Andrew says.
“Our wines are made with food in mind, to be enjoyed with friends and family. They are approachable in their youth but, if cellared, will truly express the fruit, vintage, region and place.
“I believe that, all too often in life, we are guided by regulation or conformity when sometimes you just have to follow your gut feeling and go with the flow – that’s my philosophy on winemaking.”
WayWood’s Quattro series – the introductory tier of a red, a white and a rose – are wines particularly influenced by this sentiment.
“The Quattro blends are shaped by our travel, the people we meet and the food we eat. They are a tribute to living life to the full, exploring new boundaries and techniques, and visiting the edge of convention.
“Our vision here is to make wines that are fun, stimulate discussion and evoke images of sitting in a bar or café anywhere across the globe.”
The Varietal collection more closely reflects the McLaren Vale region, showcasing its ability to produce varietal definition and integrity. The range includes old favourites Shiraz, Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc, many vintages of which have been award winning. Andrew and
Lisa’s real focus however is demonstrating the rise and success of ‘alternative’ varieties in the region, with their Sangiovese, Nebbiolo, Tempranillo and Montepulciano also gaining much critical applause.
The series of Reserve wines is a reminder and celebration of the couple’s decision to follow their dreams – they call them the WayWood Years. A trio of wines, only bottled in exceptional years, are testament to the best of that vintage.
The ‘96’ is a tribute to the Aussie hero, Shiraz. ‘97’ is a Shiraz Cabernet blend; a nod to mateship and Australian tradition. ‘98’ is something alternative, new and bold – a Nebbiolo.
“There are periods in life that, on reflection, are major turning points; when decisions prove to be life changing and unexpectedly set you off into new directions. We continue to enjoy where these
unknown paths take us and we hope you do too.”
In 2014 WayWood was given a 5-Star rating by the Halliday Wine Companion and has retained every year since, with the Shiraz, Cabernet and Tempranillo regularly being awarded 93 points or above.
In 2015 their first vineyard was purchased in the sought after area of Blewitt Springs and from the 2016 vintage, the Shiraz has been a single vineyard wine with the first release gaining 93 points by James Halliday.
The past few years has seen much work done in the vineyard and Andrew has high expectations for the quality of the fruit, and claims is one to watch.