Not long ago well-heeled wine-lovers of Australia, and indeed many around the world, felt a familiar tingle in their taste buds.
Glasses glowed with the annual release of the latest Penfolds Premium and Icon and Luxury wines. The colour was mostly red, where the power of Penfolds resides.
Bin numbers familiar over the years – 28, 128, 389, 407 and historic names like St Henri and Magill were paraded.
The most anticipated and most precisely scrutinised was, of course, the good old Bin 95 – the Grange.
As well it might be.
It is considered by many who know their bottles as one of the great wines of the world; Australia’s only ‘First Growth’. Born in secrecy in the early fifties and nurtured by Max Schubert and only a handful of others over the last sixty years it has displayed the power, complexity and longevity of the quintessential Aussie blend of shiraz and cabernet. Penfolds has access to some of the finest red vineyards in the land and the precise combination of fruit varies from year to year depending on the decisions of the chief winemaker (Peter Gago since 2002) and his team.
The primary source of information is the book ‘The Rewards of Patience’ by Andrew Caillard MW now in its seventh edition.