Shaw + Smith winery was founded in 1989 by Michael Hill Smith and Martin Shaw with the goal of producing elegant, refined, world class wines from the cool climate Adelaide hills region of Australia. That Shaw + Smith have succeeded in spades should come as no surprise given the resumes of the winery's two founders. Michael Hill Smith was born into wine, a member of the Yalumba family. A Cordon Bleu trained chef, wine writer, wine judge, and Australia's first Master of Wine he relished the opportunity to build and establish something new when he was bought out of Yalumba in 1986. He found the perfect partner in Martin Shaw, his cousin, who Michael refers to as this "third brother". Martin had been Brian Croser's right hand man at Petaluma, which at that point was arguably the most famous Chardonnay producer in Australia. In addition to his work at Shaw + Smith Martin is an in demand consultant who has worked all over the globe.
The two cousins' love of structured, lively wines has always informed the winegrowing and winemaking at Shaw and Smith. Now in their third decade of production they share the same passion today as they did in 1989 constantly striving forward. In January 2013, Adam Wadewitz joined wine making team - formerly of Seppelt and Best's where he was a finalist for Winemaker of the Year in Australian Gourmet Traveller in 2010 and a Jimmy Watson Trophy winner in 2011. This last addition illustrates the collegial attitude and lack of ego that permeates Shaw + Smith. The only goal is better wine.
The wines perfectly capture the terroir of the region. The Adelaide Hills are significantly cooler than neighbouring Barossa; on average 4 ̊C cooler in the daytime and up to 8 ̊C cooler at night. This estate produces benchmark Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay and Shiraz revealing an elegance that is not often associated with Australia.