OVERVIEW The Barossa Valley was planted extensively with Shiraz, Mourvèdre and Grenache by the early settlers. In the 1950s Penfolds started experimenting with table wine blends of Shiraz and the robust grape variety Mourvèdre. In response to a growing international market for the highly perfumed wines of the Southern Rhone, Penfolds introduced the 1992 vintage of the Old Vine Barossa Valley Shiraz Grenache Mourvèdre. The wine was elevated to the Bin range with the 1998 Penfolds Bin 138. Sourced from old, low-yielding Barossa Valley vines, this is one of the few Penfolds wines that remains in component form during older, oak maturation and is blended just prior to bottling.
COLOUR Bright garnet red.
NOSE Aromatic and fruit-driven – lifted rhubarb and red berried fruits – pomegranate and wild raspberry. Underlying Asian spices, nutmeg with hints of white pepper and licorice. Only three varieties? There’s much more aromatic traffic evident!
PALATE Medium-bodied. Sweet and generous flavours of raspberry/cranberry, complexed with elements of cold meats, white chocolate and vanilla. Excellent overall balance, finishing with ripe integrated juicy tannins. Very much fruit-driven with no obvious oak overtones. No varietal flavour chromatogram revealed – an effortless amalgam on offer.
VINEYARD REGIONS Barossa Valley, South Australia.
VINTAGE CONDITIONS With above-average winter rainfalls and cool conditions that followed during the spring period, Barossa Valley budburst arrived a little later than usual in late October. Walking the vineyards in spring, soil moisture levels resulted in healthy shoot growth and early canopy development. Healthy vegetative growth continued during the cooler spring months and delayed veraison and berry development in the new year. It also meant meticulous care and attention from the viticulture team was required to manage disease and pressure canopy management had to be strategic. A few warm days at the end of January guaranteed the completion of veraison and commencement of the ripening season. Multiple rain events, often isolated, meant that attention to sub-regional detail was required. Ditto selective harvesting of pristine fruit.
GRAPE VARIETY 65% Shiraz, 20% Grenache, 15% Mataro.
MATURATION Matured for 12 months in older American oak hogsheads.
WINE ANALYSIS Alc/Vol: 14.5%, Acidity: 5.9g/L, pH: 3.65.
LAST TASTED November 2012.
PEAK DRINKING Now – 2020.
FOOD MATCH from Jock Zonfrillo, Executive Chef, Magill Estate Restaurant – located at the spiritual home of Penfolds, South Australia: Taro gnocchi with braised hare, roast peppers and saba.