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Community Tasting Notes (average 103 notes) - and median of 95 pts. in hiding notes with no text
| ||Tasted by alion on 5/3/2015 & rated 96 points: 2 hour decant. Rich. Exotic. Remarkable concentration. Fruit driven - blue and blackberries - although secondary leathery elements too. Prominent oak but the wine is not dry at all and the wine manages and suits it. Blind I might have guessed very high end Spanish. No way this tastes like a 16 year old bottle that has been stored in a natural cellar. So young and alive. (756 views)|
| ||Tasted by RickyT12 on 4/5/2015 & rated 98 points: Dark garnet |
Mushroom, soy sauce, boysenberry,dusty cherry, a light toasted oak, hint of raspberry all nose. Finish is so good. 20 plus second finish. Big silky mouth feel. Nose is massive.
Delicious. Extremely well balanced wine. Still very young. Mix of blue berry, and raspberry flavors. If you are 2 people drinking this I highly recommend a short decant and then taste the amazing transitions. Weight is medium plus. Tannins are still strong in this one, but timing might be just right. 1.5 hours in.
Flavors are black currant, toasted almonds, wood flavors.
Creamy cheese or fresh dairy nose.
3 transition, great flavors and nose. Excellent wine. One of the best I have had this year! (1213 views)
| ||Tasted by TAStark on 3/6/2015: Dusty and dirty on the nose with a heavy dose of dill and vanilla. Has that meaty syrah note. On the palate this wine seems to be a little tight. Perhaps needs more time, even though it's 16 years old. Dark fruits and a metric f* ton of American oak. (1448 views)|
| ||Tasted by hiker_guy on 3/3/2015: A ringer thrown into a high end blind Rhone tasting. |
Immediately called Australia with the nose. Big, sweet, fruity. Nice complexity though and it evolved nicely.
Palate was smooth, silky, interesting, with good complexity. Oak was nicely integrated with the big fruit but still obvious. Longggg finish.
Very nice. (1538 views)
| ||Tasted by dpolivy on 3/2/2015 & rated 94 points: DRC Tasting Group: Rhone Night (Wild Ginger, Seattle, WA): Tasted blind. Dark, dense and intense nose. Fleshy, jammy, rich and unctuous body. Definite wood influence. Big fruit, filled with sweet, dark black berries and wild plum. Earthy, spicy tannins and nice length to finish. (1594 views)|
| ||Tasted by Romol on 1/11/2015 & rated 95 points: Decanted 2+ hours. It needed it. Better with every minute in the glass. Dark deep colour, port like nose. Very good wine. Drink now (with air) or drink during the next 10 years. 95 pts (2052 views)|
| ||Tasted by UPL on 4/29/2014 & rated 100 points: whats going on with penfolds grange?|
whats going on with Robert Parker?
His Rating is a shame for this wine
Such a dreaming nose--floral sense--so much fruit inside--
Tannins are soften, but still in the right place----but today very silky--a cashmere Feeling--
a wine cannot be better than this Beauty
if you are single--buy a bottle of this beauty--and you are married in 1 year
--unbelievable-- (5599 views)
| ||Tasted by Uncle John on 3/28/2014 & rated 95 points: Big rich and beautiful. this was very smooth and long with great textural depth. Great showing tonight with many years ahead for this Aussie beauty. (5186 views)|
| ||Tasted by Bcw1989 on 3/24/2014 & rated 92 points: I don't have much experience with drinking Grange, but this was a nice wine. Decanted and let sit for about 45 minutes in decanter. The most striking feature was this wine did not taste like Shiraz, but had a more merlot quality to it. Tannins have softened quite a bit, but the fruit was still quite present. This has many years left in the bottle to lay down. The only drawback was a bit medicinal in aftertaste. Otherwise, this was good wine complimenting the good food. Great experience. (5054 views)|
| ||Tasted by UPL on 2/6/2014 & rated 99 points: best ever!!--fullbodied--wooonderful--in 10 years 100 Points--will last for many decades--WOTN (5758 views)|
| ||Tasted by Frijole on 2/2/2014: no tasting note (4973 views)|
| ||Tasted by Loren Sonkin on 1/29/2014 & rated 94 points: Barolos ( and few more) (Chris's): This got about an hour of breathing. Inky purple in color. The nose has graphite, black raspberries and a diesel-type quality. Very nice. Nice acidity and lots of fruit; black raspberries. Light tannins with a slight minty note. Long finish. (2374 views)|
| ||Tasted by Hodby on 1/29/2014 & rated 65 points: Dark red-purple color. Highly aromatic, port-y, with sun-scorched fresh prune skin nose, grape jam, vanilla, eucalyptus, celery root. On arrival, a huge structure, very firm tannin and low acidity. Tiring to taste. Too much American oak, too much overrripe pulp and burned skins pressed far too hard. A very high intensity sip, following which I'm not interested in having another. Stylistically it's something I've ever enjoyed, as with most Amarone and Late Harvest Zinfandels have held so little charm for me. Not a flawed wine but a wine of excess. (2362 views)|
| ||Tasted by chbeaumont on 1/23/2014 & rated 93 points: Double decanted 6 hours before. Deep; initially baked fruit on nose, this unfurls majestically; first up a burly feel it unwinds to show polish & tremendous depth. Much too young, this has tremendous potential. (2002 views)|
| ||Tasted by BBinSC on 12/21/2013 & rated 96 points: Beautiful wine, rich, spicy, chewy with a long finish. Still showing the menthol and oaky notes, but all in balance. Great capper for the Solstice. (2185 views)|
| ||Tasted by Poisey on 12/19/2013 & rated 97 points: Not decanted. Ash, blackberry, cola fizz, mint, gravel, burnt rubber and petrol notes. Constantly changing. Super long finish. Concentrated and silky smooth. An elegant Shiraz. Olive paste with graphite and salty like finish that lingers. Polished and complex. A regal wine. Me 96pts/Costa 97Pts/Ed 98pts. (2228 views)|
| ||Tasted by Stefanos T. on 12/9/2013 & rated 98 points: Although I gave high scores to the few other vintages of Grange I've had before I was never totally convinced. Here, in comparison to other great Syrahs of similar age it shone.|
Deep ruby colored, almost purple. Youthful but expressive with a nose that offers ripe polished fruit together with notes of eukalyptus, iodine and chocolate. On the palate it has weight but it's not massive. It has perfect poise with high acidity and tasty tannins. Velvety and long. It is an aussie wine and aromatically it shows. Can be drunk now with pleasure but it will develop further and keep for decades. (2358 views)
| ||Tasted by Yiannis on 12/7/2013 & rated 96 points: Drank with Stefanos and John over the former's birthday lunch. Tasted blind alongside the Chateau de la Negly La Porte du Ciel from the same vintage, this was remarkably fresher, more youthful and (dare I say) more elegant and light on its feet. Stereotypes about old vs. new world styles collapse sometimes, especially when the wines are tasted blind. Dark ruby, impressively youthful color. Amazimg nose of blueberry, eucalyptus, camphor, chocolate, coffee and spices with noticeable but perfectly integrated American oak character. I guessed Barossa shiraz and John noticed the presence of American oak, so combining these 2 observations we concluded Grange. What was hard to identify was the vintage, since this seemed much more youthful. On the palate it is still lighter than the Negly with firmer tannins, more vibrant fruit and higher acidity. Alcohol level is nominally equal to that of the Chateau de la Negly (14.5%) but by far less noticeable here. Very long aftertaste. More food friendly than the Negly. Drinking nicely now but will continue improving for many years. This is considered an average vintage for Grange, but it was the second time I came across it and found it fantastic on both occasions. (2618 views)|
| ||Tasted by winesteward on 11/30/2013 & rated 97 points: Straight from the bottle, very tannic. Double decanted and left to air for 2 hours. Very dark core with just the slightest tinge of brown on the edge. The decanting softened the tannins sufficiently to make it approachable. Sweet, ripe, plummy fruit. Prune, date and fig follow but it still tastes very fresh. Later, blackberry and blackcurrant also show when the acidity kicks in. Coffee and sweet spices also make an appearance. Great length with a spice/fig flavor that won't quit. Powerful wine with plenty of life left in it. Maybe a young adult. Beautifully balanced and very complex with many nuances of flavor. A truly great wine and a privilege to drink. Outstanding. (2253 views)|
| ||Tasted by UPL on 11/20/2013 & rated 99 points: again: woooooooooooooooooooow!!! (2308 views)|
| ||Tasted by Henman on 10/12/2013 & rated 91 points: Decanted for 3 hours. The bottle threw a lot of sediment. The nose was a bit port like, with vibrant dark fruit, mostly blackberries. Medium bodied, quite youthful and port like, delivering vibrant black berries with smooth tannins and some hints of medicinal notes. Firm acidity and nice long finish. Not very complex or interesting though. A solid and good wine by all means, but given the reputation and price I had expected more. (2798 views)|
| ||Tasted by KVM on 10/9/2013 & rated 91 points: Grange tasting at Divino, Calgary; 10/8/2013-10/9/2013 (Divino Bistro, Calgary): Very dark red. Black berry fruit, mint, sea shore, caramel. Medium body, black fruit palate. Simpler than the other vintages. Still good concentration. Bordelais. (2691 views)|
| ||Tasted by MWiking on 9/6/2013 & rated 99 points: First time I tried Grange. I had high expectations and it delivered them all. Magic wine. one of the best ever. 99+ (3239 views)|
| ||Tasted by Ramberg on 9/5/2013 & rated 94 points: On the nose a somewhat disturbing whiff of plastic/Bakelite indicating heat…|
Secondary aromas of damp cellar and perhaps a slight touch of cork (?), and mature dark fruit profile, vanilla & wet oak.
Soft and long with mature fruit, primarily cherries, and mature and soft fine grained tannins.
A touch of US oak vanilla present on the finish.
Really good Aussie Syrah, but with my somewhat limited experience of Grange I must say that I prefer the 1997 Grange over this, as I believe that the 97 was finer, and that this vintage might have peaked?
Still, nice, so 94 points for tonight. (3282 views)
| ||Tasted by TheWineDon on 8/10/2013 & rated 95 points: Took to a 60th birthday party of one of our wine group members, so had some stiff competition, including a 01 William Cole, 06 Dunn HM, 97 Montelena and an 04 Bachus. The only one, IMHO, that gave it a run was the Bachus. The Grange has amazing black cherry and cinnamon on the nose, with a long, vanilla-tinged expression on the palate. This was my first bottle of Grange. Although some (including Parker) indicated this was an off year, we found it imminently enjoyable. (2957 views)|
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NOTE: Scores and reviews are the property of JancisRobinson.com and Vinous and James Halliday Australian Wine Companion and Vintage Tastings and RJonWine.com. (manage subscription channels)
|By Jancis Robinson, MW|
(Penfolds, Grange South Australia Red) Subscribe to see review text.
|By Stephen Tanzer|
Vinous, July/August 2004, IWC Issue #115
(Penfolds Wines Grange South Australia) Subscribe to see review text.
|By James Halliday|
James Halliday Australian Wine Companion (7/8/2003)
(Penfolds Grange) Subscribe to see review text.
|By John Kapon|
Vintage Tastings, Beijing (5/23/2008)
(Penfolds Grange) The 1999 Penfolds Grange was a rare 100% Shiraz and spent 17 months in oak. Gil observed, ‘classic eucalyptus and mintiness from the wood,’ jokingly calling it ‘koala food’ lol. I found the ’99 more medicinal, perhaps due to the lack of Cabernet, I wondered, along with a weird fruitiness to it, still very aromatic but a touch sickly. Its flavors were more classically in line, but still very young and hot with spicy szechuan flavors. 92 points
|By Richard Jennings|
(Penfolds Grange) Beautiful, redolent, blackberry nose; tasty berry, blackberry, blueberry, plum palate, with good balance; long finish 95+ pts. 95 points
|By Richard Jennings|
(Penfolds Grange) Big vanilla, blackberry nose; very tasty, concentrated, blackberry, boysenberry, cardamom palate, with purity; long finish 95 points
Penfolds Producer website
Producer Location - Barossa (Google Maps)
Australia's winemaking history of less than two hundred years is brief by European measures though, like Europe, punctuated by periods of extreme success and difficult times. From the earliest winemaking days Penfolds has figured prominently and few would argue the importance of Penfolds’ influence on Australia’s winemaking psyche.
Without the influence of Penfolds the modern Australian wine industry would look very different indeed. Sitting comfortably outside of fad and fashion, Penfolds has taken Australian wine to the world on a grand stage and forged a reputation for quality that is without peer.
Penfolds’ reputation for making wines of provenance and cellaring potential might suggest a mantle of tradition and formality is the preferred attire of a company with so much history to defend. But to label Penfolds as simply an established and conventional winemaker, would be to confuse tradition with consideration and to overlook the innovative spirit that has driven Penfolds since its foundation, and continues to find expression in modern times.
If there is anything traditional about Penfolds, it is the practice of constantly reviewing the wines it already does well, and continuously evolving and refining styles as vineyards mature and access to ever older and more varied vineyard sites improves.
Making The Best Possible Wine
At Penfolds, the role of the winemaker is to make the best possible wine within the constraints of each vintage. Penfolds’ house style emerged from a fortified-wine producing culture and evolved as a winemaking philosophy – a way of making wine – which has had a profound effect on the entire Australian wine industry.
The concept of multi-regional and vineyard blending, a feature of the Penfolds house style, is an amplification of the ‘all-round wine’. Without the constraints of a single vineyard, winemakers could choose the best possible fruit with the outstanding characteristics of each vineyard.
While American oak has played a central role in the development of Penfolds red wines, French oak has been increasingly used in the evolution of new wines – particularly RWT and Yattarna. Maturation in oak, which follows fermentation, is also key to the Penfolds house style.
The Penfolds approach to winemaking has percolated through the entire Australian wine industry over the last 50 years. The techniques employed in research and development of Penfolds wines are remarkable and many of the discoveries and innovations have had a lasting impact on winemaking thinking.
In Max Schubert, Don Ditter, John Duval and Peter Gago, Penfolds has nurtured four of Australia's great winemakers. They have passed the Chief Winemaker’s baton of responsibility for crafting some of Australia's most iconic wines, down through the past six decades.
Joining Peter Gago in the Penfolds winemaking team are Senior Red Winemaker Steve Lienert, Senior White Winemaker Kym Schroeter, and Red Winemakers Andrew Baldwin, Adam Clay, Stephanie Dutton and Matt Woo - also the Penfolds Fortified Winemaker. All members of the Penfolds winemaking team ensure that Penfolds’ reputation for outstanding quality is upheld.
Penfolds draws fruit from a combined vineyard area of 618 hectares in the Barossa region of South Australia. The Barossa is about 70 kilometres north of Adelaide and in 1911 Penfolds established a winery at Nuriootpa, completed in time for the 1913 vintage. The Barossa region is known for its relatively low rainfall with many vineyards dry grown on single wire trellising.
The historic and heritage-protected Magill Estate Vineyard was established in 1844 by Dr Christopher Rawson and Mary Penfold—just eight years after the foundation of Adelaide. It was originally known as the Grange Vineyard, named after their new homestead ‘The Grange’, a cottage which still stands intact amongst the vines.
Joseph Gilbert planted the first vines in the Eden Valley in 1842 and since that time the region has become synonymous with producing elegant riesling and complex shiraz. While its name suggests a concave nature, Eden Valley is actually a wide ridge, situated east of the Barossa Valley with an altitude ranging from 440 – 550 metres.
McLaren Vale is located approximately 40km to the south of Adelaide, with the vineyards in the region located between 6 and 15 kilometres from the Gulf of St Vincent. The elevation ranges from 50 to 350 metres above sea level. Penfolds has company owned vineyards throughout the region, using the fruit as blending components for premium red wines such as Grange and Bin 389.
Penfolds has had a long history with the Coonawarra region, dating back to their first vineyard purchase in 1960. It is one of the most famous red wine regions in Australia with weathered limestone terra rossa soils, relatively cool climate and overall water availability. Coonawarra has played a significant role in many of Penfolds' multi-regional wines as well as the single region wines such as Bin 128.
James Halliday Australian Wine Companion Winery Of The Year 2014: Penfolds
Penfolds is Australia’s foremost winemaker, with an unbroken line dating back to its establishment in 1844 when medical practitioner Dr Christopher Rawson Penfold and wife Mary purchased ‘the delightfully situated and truly valuable of Mackgill … Comprising 500 acres (202 hectares) of the choicest land’. Here they built the house that still stands today, and within a few years had begun the winery and cellar on the site of today’s buildings at Magill Estate.
Mary took charge of winemaking, initially producing grenache prescribed by her husband as a tonic for anaemic patients. By 1870 she, son-in-law Thomas Hyland and cellar manager/winemaker Joseph Gillard had formed Penfolds & Co. With markets in South Australia, Victoria and New South Wales, their wine production was over one-third of South Australia’s total.
Growth continued unabated, and in 1945 Penfolds acquired the jewel of the Magill Vineyard, at that time the largest vineyard in South Australia. It now has 2100 hectares of vineyards, the largest share of Australia’s total. Two men came together in the 1950s to lay the foundation of Penfolds today: winemaker Max Schubert, and research chemist Ray Beckwith (who died shortly after his 100th birthday in 2012); indeed, their contribution transcended Penfolds to the entire Australian wine industry.
The architecture for the Penfolds wine portfolio of the twenty-first century was established in the 1960s, half a century ago. There has been growth, both in the range of labels and their price points, but it has been cleverly – indeed sensitively – managed; demand-driven growth has been achieved without any quality compromise whatsoever.
There is no possibility that the pre-eminence of Penfolds will ever be challenged by any other Australian wine business. Equally certain is that the Penfolds brand value will continue to gain ground on the world stage of all consumable products. If proof be needed, the overall quality of the wines in this Wine Companion is the best Penfolds has ever presented to the markets of the globe.
Author: James Halliday Jul 2013
1999 Penfolds GrangeBin 95 Grange
Penfolds GrangeLangton's The Definitive Grange Guide (includes 2006 vintage)
The Rewards of Patience (7th Edition)
Vintage Label Shiraz Cabernet
2010 Bin 95 Grange 96% 4%
2009 Bin 95 Grange 98% 2%
2008 Bin 95 Grange 98% 2%
2007 Bin 95 Grange 98% 2%
2006 Bin 95 Grange 98% 2%
2005 Bin 95 Grange 96% 4%
2004 Bin 95 Grange 96% 4%
2003 Bin 95 Grange 97% 3%
2002 Bin 95 Grange 98.5% 1.5%
2001 Bin 95 Grange 99% 1%
2000 Bin 95 Grange 100%
1999 Bin 95 Grange 100%
1998 Bin 95 Grange 97% 3%
1997 Bin 95 Grange 96% 4%
1996 Bin 95 Grange 94% 6%
1995 Bin 95 Grange 94% 6%
1994 Bin 95 Grange 89% 11%
1993 Bin 95 Grange 86% 14%
1992 Bin 95 Grange 90% 10%
1991 Bin 95 Grange 95% 5%
1990 Bin 95 Grange 95% 5%
1989 Bin 95 Grange Hermitage 91% 9%
1988 Bin 95 Grange Hermitage 94% 6%
1987 Bin 95 Grange Hermitage 90% 10%
1986 Bin 95 Grange Hermitage 87% 13%
1985 Bin 95 Grange Hermitage 99% 1%
1984 Bin 95 Grange Hermitage 95% 5%
1983 Bin 95 Grange Hermitage 94% 6%
1982 Bin 95 Grange Hermitage 94% 6%
1981 Bin 95 Grange Hermitage 89% 11%
1980 Bin 95 Grange Hermitage 96% 4%
1979 Bin 95 Grange Hermitage 87% 13%
1978 Bin 95 Grange Hermitage 90% 10%
1977 Bin 95 Grange Hermitage 91% 9%
1976 Bin 95 Grange Hermitage 89% 11%
1975 Bin 95 Grange Hermitage 90% 10%
1974 Bin 95 Grange Hermitage 93% 7%
1973 Bin 95 Grange Hermitage 98% 2%
1972 Bin 95 Grange Hermitage 90% 10%
1971 Bin 95 Grange Hermitage 87% 13%
1970 Bin 95 Grange Hermitage 90% 10%
1969 Bin 95 Grange Hermitage 95% 5%
1969 Bin 826 Grange Hermitage
1968 Bin 95 Grange Hermitage 94% 6%
1968 Bin 826 Grange Hermitage
1967 Bin 95 Grange Hermitage 94% 6%
1967 Bin 74 Grange Hermitage
1966 Bin 95 Grange Hermitage 88% 12%
1966 Bin 72 Grange Hermitage
1966 Bin 71 Grange Hermitage
1965 Bin 95 Grange Hermitage 95% 5%
1965 Bin 71 Grange Hermitage
1965 Bin 70 Grange Hermitage
1965 Bin 69 Grange Hermitage
1964 Bin 95 Grange Hermitage 90% 10%
1964 Bin 68 Grange Hermitage
1964 Bin 67 Grange Hermitage
1964 Bin 66 Grange Hermitage
1964 Bin 395 Grange Hermitage
1963 Bin 95 Grange Hermitage 100%
1963 Bin 65 Grange Hermitage
1962 Bin 95 Grange Hermitage 87% 13%
1962 Bin 456 Grange Hermitage
1962 Bin 59A Grange Hermitage
1962 Bin 59 Grange Hermitage
1961 Bin 395 Grange Hermitage 88% 12%
1961 Bin 395 Grange Hermitage
1960 Bin 95 Grange Hermitage 92% 8%
1960 Bin 45 Grange Hermitage
1959 Bin 46 Grange Hermitage 90% 10%
1959 Bin 49 Grange Hermitage
1959 Bin 95 Grange Hermitage
1958 Bin 46 Grange Hermitage 94% 6%
1957 Bin 50 Grange Hermitage 88% 12%
1956 Bin 14 Grange Hermitage 96% 4%
1955 Bin 95 Grange Hermitage 90% 10%
1955 Bin 148A Grange Hermitage
1955 Bin 54 Grange Hermitage
1955 Bin 53 Grange Hermitage
1955 Bin 14 Grange Hermitage
1955 Bin 13 Grange Hermitage
1954 Bin 12 Grange Hermitage 98% 2%
1954 Bin 11 Grange Hermitage
1953 Bin 2 Grange Hermitage 87% 13%
1953 Bin 145 Grange Hermitage
1953 Bin 86C Grange Hermitage
1953 Bin 10 Grange Hermitage
1953 Bin 9 Grange Cabernet Sauvignon (Block 42) 100%
1952 Bin 4 Grange Hermitage 100%
1952 Bin 4A Grange Hermitage
1951 Bin 1 Grange Hermitage 100%
GrangePenfold's Rewards Of Patience
Australia Wine Australia (Australian Wine and Brandy Corporation) | Australian Wines (Wikipedia)
South Australia South Australian Wine Industry Association | South Australian Wines (Wikipedia)