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Penfolds Reserve Bin A Chardonnay has evolved into a wine that is now a distinctive, single-region style in its own right, with a contemporary and distinctive Adelaide Hills Chardonnay persona.
All fruit is hand-picked into small bins and then whole-bunch pressed. The juice is incrementally filled to barrel directly from the press and allowed to undergo a natural fermentation, sans inoculation. Every new and seasoned French oak barrique is its own unique 225-litre ferment. Enhanced mouthfeel and complexity is achieved by fermenting on solids, 100% malolactic fermentation (all natural).
Drinking well now, but will improve with time. Peak drinking now - 2025.
Translucent – very light straw.
Unashamedly Adelaide Hills – white stone fruits (peach), pink grapefruit, quince and Pink Lady apple skin/peel – sitting alongside a cinnamon and custard apple creaminess.
Oak sits well - light and toasty, with nuances of cypress… amid complexing notes of fresh brie and almond nougat.
An attractive arc of brine/crushed oyster-shell reminds of source and style.
White peach, pink grapefruit and custard apple flavours linger.
So too the lees-induced textural notes – an almond-meal creaminess and a swede/parsnip stock preparation savouriness.
Oak prances across palate – such a dalliance revealing little!
Powdery/talc acidity facilitates a clean and fresh finish.
Origin: Adelaide Hills, South Australia.
Maturation: Nine months in French oak (40% new).
Autumn and winter rainfall were above the long-term averages. Rain stopped abruptly in early August with nothing more than light and infrequent showers observed throughout spring.
A significant rainfall event in early January revitalised vineyards and gave vines a much needed boost throughout veraison. Mild days coupled with cool nights provided consistent conditions, resulting in high acid retention with even and steady sugar accumulation over the ripening phase. Harvest across most vineyards in the Adelaide Hills was compressed with the majority of the vineyards picked by the end of March.
The Penfolds Collection