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Andrew Caillard tastes the Penfolds Collection 2020

Andrew Caillard tastes the Penfolds Collection 2020

Andrew Caillard MW is likely the world’s foremost voice when it comes to the iconic oeuvre of Penfolds. As the author of the ongoing essential Penfolds reference The Rewards of Patience and the Langton’s Grange Guide (now in it’s 8th edition), there is no-one that has tasted more Penfolds vintages, nor with a richer understanding of the brand’s ethos and history. Ahead of the 6 August release of the Penfolds Collection 2020, Andrew Caillard MW reviews this highly anticipated release. Explore our portfolio of Penfolds Wines. 

"Penfolds

An outstanding collection of classic Penfolds styles, showing brilliant consistency across all the range. This release offers wine collectors and drinkers alike some of Australia’s most sought after wines, renowned for their compelling stories and reputation for further cellaring.

2020 Penfolds Bin 51 Riesling, Eden Valley

 

Pale green gold. Fragrant camomile lime, lemon grass aromas with hints of ginger. Fresh sweet lemon curd, grapefruit, lime squash, flavours, fine loose-knit powdery textures, attractive mid-palate richness and crunchy long acidity. Spectacular Eden Valley Riesling with beautiful aromatic complexity, richness of flavour and mineral length. Should age for the long term. Seal; screwcap Now-2030 12% alc 98 points

 

A beautiful pure-fruited and mineral textured Eden Valley Riesling. Despite the challenging bushfires of 2020 in the Adelaide Hills (further south), the 2020 Bin 51 highlights an outstanding growing season for riesling in this region. A brilliant wine.

 

Two months in stainless steel

 

2019 Penfolds Bin 311 Chardonnay

 

Pale gold. Fresh grapefruit white apricot aromas with tonic water/ flinty complexity. Supple fruit, sweet palate with intense grapefruit, peach, bitter lemon flavours, creamy textures, some al-dente notes and long fresh linear acidity. Finishes crisp with plentiful apricot, peach notes. Seal; screwcap Now-2026 13% alc 93 points

 

A crisp delicious early drinking chardonnay with attractive fruit complexity, creamy textures and mineral line.

Tasmania, Adelaide Hills & Tumbarumba

Eight months in 35% new and 65% seasoned French oak barriques

 

2019 Penfolds Bin 19A Reserve Bin Chardonnay, Adelaide Hills

 

Pale gold. Classic flinty, grapefruit, nectarine aromas with underlying vanilla roasted almond notes. Generous in flavour yet tight in structure with pure grapefruit white peach nectarine flavours, creamy textures, savoury complexity and fresh persistent mineral acidity. Finishes long, sweet and crisp with light marzipan notes. Beautiful wine. Seal; screwcap Now – 2028 13% alc 97 points

 

Wonderful cutting-edge Australian Chardonnay showing superb volume, richness of fruit and tension. An Australian First Growth Chardonnay reflecting superb fruit sourcing and winemaking philosophy. Move over Puligny!

 

Eight months in 80% new and 20% seasoned French oak barriques

 

2018 Penfolds Bin 144 Yattarna Chardonnay

 

Pale gold. Elegant style wine with high- pitched nectarine, melon aromas with flinty complexity. Intense pure lime grapefruit nectarine flavours, fine loose-knit al-dente/ chalky textures, lovely mid-palate richness, underlying savoury oak complexity and fresh persistent crunchy acidity. Expressive and pure fruited with superb vinosity and mineral length. Needs time to uncoil and further develop. Seal; screwcap 2022 – 2032 13% alc 96 points

 

An austere yet voluminous Chardonnay where less is more. A highly individual and expressive wine that needs a few years to develop more complexity and richness. Judging by the recent Penfolds Rewards of Patience tastings, the wine promises a lot more with further bottle age.

 

Tasmania, Tumbarumba, Adelaide Hills

 

Eight months in 60% new and 40% seasoned French oak barriques

 

2019 Penfolds Bin 23 Pinot Noir

 

Medium crimson. Intense ripe strawberry, red cherry fruits with roasted walnut notes. Supple, slinky textured wine with lovely ripe strawberry, red cherry, mulberry fruits, fine al dente / chalky tannins, lovely mid-palate viscosity and underlying ginger oak. Finishes long and sweet. Lovely definition, density and freshness. Seal; screwcap Now – 2026 13.5% alc 93 points

 

An early drinking style that offers terrific varietal definition and the Penfolds house experience. Buoyant fruit, silky richness and underlying light tannin vigour give an exceptional “drink-now” experience.

 

Tamar Valley, Adelaide Hills & Henty

 

Eight months in 31% new and 69% seasoned French oak barriques

 

2018 Penfolds Bin 138 Shiraz Grenache Mataro, Barossa Valley

 

Deep crimson. Intense blackberry, musky plum, inky aromas with roasted walnut notes. Generous velvety wine with deep set juicy blackberry, dark chocolate, musky plum fruits, fine plentiful chocolaty firm textures, savoury oak complexity and integrated fine acidity. Finishes chocolaty leafy firm with musky plum aniseed notes. Delicious early drinking style with superb richness of flavour and power. Best to drink soon. Seal; screwcap Now – 2028 14.5% alc 95 points

 

Fantastic early drinking style with dense colour, plentiful grenache-like musky complexity, superb viscosity and freshness. A highlight of the 2020 Collection.

 

Around 14 months in seasoned French & American oak hogsheads

 

2018 Penfolds Bin 128 Coonawarra Shiraz

 

Medium deep crimson. Redcurrant, blackberry, mocha aromas with chinotto notes. Inky textured wine with redcurrant, red cherry fruits, a touch of choco-mint and fine loose-knit slightly grippy tannins. Finishes grainy firm with attractive mineral length. Very much in the Coonawarra Claret Style. Seal; screwcap Now- 2030 14.5% alc 92 points

 

An aromatic and gentle medium-bodied Bin 128 showing excellent regional definition, and the unmistakable Penfolds winemaking signature.

 

12 months in 26% new French and 74% seasoned French oak hogsheads

 

 

2018 Penfolds Bin 28 Kalimna Shiraz

 

Deep crimson. Intense dark cherry, blackberry, graphite tarry aromas with mocha espresso notes. Dense blackberry pastille, dark cherry fruits, plentiful, vigorous fine muscular/ chalky tannins and mocha dark chocolate notes. Finishes brambly firm and long. An assertive Bin 28 with plenty of richness, volume and torque but should settle down with a few years of bottle age. One to keep for a while. Seal screwcap 2022-2034 14.5% alc 94 points

 

A lovely iron fist in a velvet glove wine. Will get even better with further bottle age. A versatile Penfolds red with the richness and flavour for early drinking and the tannin density for keeping.

 

Barossa Valley, McLaren Vale, Padthaway, Wrattonbully, Fleurieu, Robe, Mt Lofty Ranges, Adelaide Hills, Langhorne Creek

 

12 months in seasoned American oak hogsheads.

 

2018 Penfolds Bin 150 Marananga Shiraz, Barossa Valley

 

Deep crimson. Fresh elderberry dark cherry, blackberry, mulberry praline aromas with herb garden notes. Inky deep wine with deep set dark cherry, blackberry paneforte flavours, plentiful fine chocolaty tannins, roasted chestnut notes and integrated fresh linear acidity. Finishes chocolaty firm with persistent dark berry/ aniseed/ chinotto notes. Elemental but rich, dense and powerful. Seal; screwcap 2024 – 2035 14.5% alc 96 points

 

A Barossa Classic – showing the grandeur and class of the Marananga sub-region. Worth keeping for a while to allow the components to integrate.

 

12 months in 25% new French oak, 25% new American and one-year-old oak (25%/25%) hogsheads and puncheons.

 

2018 Penfolds Bin 407 Cabernet Sauvignon

 

Deep crimson. Fragrant lifted blackcurrant pastille, herb garden/ bay leaf/ mint aromas with mocha notes. Generous fruit sweet blackcurrant espresso herb aniseed flavours, persistent grippy fine tannins, mocha roasted walnut notes and long fresh underlying acidity, Finishes leafy firm with plentiful dark berry fruits. Neatly balanced wine. Seal; screwcap Drink 2024-2038 14.5% 94 points.

 

A robust but expressive cabernet with classical varietal definition, fruit complexity, richness and vinosity. Keep for a few years to allow the elements to fold into each other.

 

Coonawarra, Padthaway, Wrattonbully, McLaren Vale, Barossa Valley Robe

 

12 months in 21% new French, 9% new American and 70% seasoned oak hogsheads

 

2018 Penfolds Bin 389 Cabernet Shiraz

 

Deep crimson. Intense pure blackcurrant, blackberry aromas with dark chocolate notes. Generously proportioned wine with dense inky cassis, blackberry mulberry fruits, plentiful chocolaty tannins, mocha espresso oak complexity, attractive mid-palate viscosity and superb mineral length. Finishes grainy firm. A classic powerful Bin 389 year with superb fruit complexity, density and attack. Should last the distance. Seal; screwcap 2025-2045 14.5% alc 98 points

 

An Australian wine tradition that rarely disappoints. The 2018 highlights exceptional sourcing and the beautiful partnership between cabernet sauvignon and shiraz where the wine represents far more than the sum of its parts. A landmark wine of the 2020 collection offering collectors and drinkers the quintessential Penfolds experience.

 

McLaren Vale, Barossa Valley, Padthaway, Coonawarra, Robe, Wrattonbully

 

Around 18 months in 38% new and 62% seasoned American oak hogsheads.

 

2017 Penfolds St Henri Shiraz

 

Deep crimson. Intense blackberry, mulberry roasted walnut aromas with herb garden, star anise notes. Inky textured wine with pure blackberry, mulberry fruits fine supple/ velvety tannins, lovely mid-palate generosity and underlying roasted walnut notes. Finishes brambly firm with plentiful espresso dark berry fruits. Very seductive and beautifully balanced St Henri with classic buoyant fruits and animated tannin ripeness. Lovely drinking now but keep for a while. Seal; screwcap 2024 – 2034 14.5% 95 points

 

A lovely traditional multi-sourced Australian maturation style that offers the complete Penfolds story and intrigue in a bottle! This should develop very well with further bottle age.

 

Barossa Valley, McLaren Vale, Eden Valley, Port Lincoln

 

Aged for 12 months in very old (50 years+) oak vats

 

2018 Penfolds Magill Estate Shiraz

 

Deep crimson. Perfumed elderberry, dark cherry, blackberry camomile ginger aromas with hints of liquorice. Saturated but sappy dark cherry, elderberry, blackberry, dark chocolate dried roses pippy flavours, plentiful al dente/ leafy textures and ginger/ cedar oak notes. Finishes granular/grippy firm and long. Idiosyncratic but characterful wine at the cusp of ripeness. Seal; Cork, Drink 2025-2038 14.5% 93 points

 

A single vineyard “monopole” wine offering the light and shade of the vintage. From one of the last patches of 19th Century vineyard land in Adelaide.

 

17 months in 24% new French oak, 18% new American oak and 58% seasoned oak hogsheads

 

2018 Penfolds Bin 169 Cabernet Sauvignon, Coonawarra

 

Deep crimson. Fresh blackcurrant roasted chestnut vanilla marzipan aromas with hints of sage/ aniseed. Lovely pure blackcurrant, blackberry, dark cherry fruits, fine grainy tannins. Lovely mid-palate density and plentiful mocha roasted chestnut oak. Finishes gravelly firm, sweet and long with a tannin plume. Beautiful wine with lovely concentration, volume, oak balance and mineral length. Keep for a while. Seal; Cork, Drink 2025 – 2045 14.5% alc 96 points

 

A classic Coonawarra Cabernet Sauvignon showing marvellous purity of fruit and regional expression. A wine that promises so much more with further cellaring.

 

18 months in 50% new and 50% seasoned French oak hogsheads

 

2018 Penfolds Bin 798 RWT Shiraz, Barossa Valley

 

Deep crimson. Ethereal pure blackberry pastille roasted chestnut mocha aromas with hint ginger notes. Voluminous and animated wine with dense saturated blackberry dark chocolate fruits, plentiful fine velvety tannins and superb integrated roasted chestnut, mocha vanilla oak complexity. Finishes chocolatey firm. Elemental, powerful and seductive with years ahead of it. Should develop into a classic. Seal; Cork Drink 2025-2045 14.5% alc 99 points

 

Arguably the most aromatic, complex, generous and balanced Bin 798 RWT vintage of all time. A great Barossa Shiraz with brilliant cellaring potential.

 

16 months in 64% new and 36% one-year-old French oak hogsheads

 

2018 Penfolds Bin 707 Cabernet Sauvignon

 

Deep crimson. Elegant blackcurrant, black olive, graphite aromas with meaty, vanilla, mocha notes. Supple and well-concentrated with attractive blackcurrant, blackberry fruits, fine graphite/ touch al dente tannins and plentiful mocha, espresso oak notes. Finishes muscular/ chewy /cedary firm and minerally. A very polished wine with lovely fruit density and torque. Seal; Cork, Drink 2028 – 2048 14.5% alc 97 points

 

The alter-ego of Grange with marvellous varietal definition, complexity, volume and drive.

 

McLaren Vale, Coonawarra, Barossa Valley, Wrattonbully, Robe, Adelaide Hills

 

18 months in 100% new American oak hogsheads

 

2016 Penfolds Bin 95 Grange Shiraz

 

Deep crimson. Classic blackberry dark cherry praline aromas with roasted chestnut, espresso herb garden notes. Supple and compact with deep set blackberry, dark cherry dark chocolate hazelnut paneforte flavours, fine plentiful dense graphite slightly al dente/ chewy tannins and roasted chestnut espresso oak notes. Finishes chocolaty firm and minerally long. The archetypal Penfolds Style with superb fruit power and complexity, generosity and structure. It will slowly unpack over the next ten years and more. Seal; Cork, Drink 2028-2060+ 14.5% alc 98 points

 

A great follow up to the spectacular 2015 Grange. Everything is in near-perfect alignment. Should develop for decades. Another exciting year for this great marque.97 percent shiraz, 3 percent cabernet sauvignon. Barossa Valley (including Kalimna Vineyard), McLaren Vale and Clare Valley with a 1 percent contribution from Magill Estate.

 

18 months in 100% new American oak hogsheads

 

To explore the wines of Penfolds 2020 please contact your broker or shop online.

 

 

Further Reading

The Penfolds Collection 2019 Top 5

The Penfolds Collection 2019 Top 5

Here’s a look at our Top 5 picks from Penfolds Collection 2019 and the first reviews on release of the most anticipated Australian wine... 

Ned Goodwin tastes the Penfolds Collection 2020

Ned Goodwin tastes the Penfolds Collection 2020"

Ahead of the 6 August release of the Penfolds Collection 2020, Ned Goodwin MW tastes and reviews the latest releases for Langton’s...

The Top 5 Granges for Drinking Now or Soon 

The Top 5 Granges for Drinking Now or Soon 

What are the top 5 vintages of Penfolds Grange? For those that are drinking right now and into the 2020s there’s no simple answer…


 

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