Reserve Bin A Adelaide Hills Chardonnay 2017 Reserve Bin A Adelaide Hills Chardonnay 2017

The Penfolds Collection

Reserve Bin A Adelaide Hills Chardonnay 2017

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 expressive Adelaide Hills chardonnay persona. Fruit is hand-picked into small bins and then whole-bunch pressed. A portion of 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 and maturing on solids with regular yeast lees stirring. 100% malolactic fermentation (all natural).

When To Drink

Drinking well now, but will improve with time. Peak drinking now - 2028.

Taste Description

Vibrant light straw with lime green hues.

Archetypical Adelaide Hills – ostensibly white stone fruits peach and nectarine.
Sensitive batonnage of yeast lees has coaxed out a complexing nuttiness – assorted cashew, almond and Brazil nut with an ever so slight trace of nutmeg.
Latent wafts of sulphide/struck match (almost) bring closure … until a beguiling mortar and pestle, (brine) ground oyster shell scent tip toes across the finish line.

Unravels in the glass to reveal an enthralling and multi-dimensional package – line, depth, weight …!
A ‘big’ wine, certainly not shy in character! Big? Voluminous, yet controlled – restraint/precision wrestling with energy/tension. No losers.
Hints of citrus and nashi pear with the reported 40% of new oak totally absorbed, barely noticeable. Checked? Yes, 40% new!
Impressively well-integrated and complex!


98 Points - Andrew Caillard MW

98 Points - James Halliday

97 Points - Tony Love

96 Points - Campbell Mattinson

19.5+ - Matthew Jukes

16.5+ - Jancis Robinson

Awards & Accolades

KPMG Sydney Wine Show 2018 

- The KPMG Perpetual Trophy for Best Wine of Show

- The Albert Chan Memorial Prize for Best White 

- The AP John Coopers Perennial Trophy for Best Chardonnay

- The Tucker Seabrook Perpetual Trophy for Best State Show Wine Gold Medal

Winemaker Quotes

“Up there with the 2009 Bin A. Brave words indeed! Time will tell. If so, then tantamount to the finest Bin A released this century?!”

“An extravaganza of chardonnay sensorial ‘excesses’ … somehow captured at 12.5% Alc/Vol in the Hills of Adelaide”.

"Yet again, so different to Yattarna. Same variety, same producer … BUT poles apart stylistically. As requested."

- Peter Gago, Penfolds Chief Winemaker
Technical Information

Origin: Adelaide Hills, South Australia. 

Maturation: Eight months in French oak (40% new)

Wine Analysis: Alc/Vol: 12.5%, Acidity: 7.0 g/L, pH: 3.2

Variety: Chardonnay.

Vintage Conditions

Above average winter and spring rainfall offered the vines in the Adelaide Hills healthy soil moisture profiles for the growing season. September rainfall was significantly above the long-term average. Cool days and cold nights slowed vine growth in early spring with temperatures eventually warming in October. A mild and mostly dry start to summer was followed by two significant rain events after Christmas. January was mild with few hot days and unseasonal rain.

The lower than average temperatures and abundant rainfall during the growing season and veraison produced a vintage that challenged both winemakers and viticulturists alike. Moving into March, mild days slowed ripening with cool nights and warm days persisting until harvest. Mild conditions allowed for a long hang time resulting in terrific flavour development and welcomed acid retention.

Reserve Bin A Chardonnay has established a strong following since it was first released in 1994.  The impressive successes at wine shows, both in Australia and the UK, has contributed to the significant worldwide attention to this hallmark Penfolds style. 

The early vintages included some Tumbarumba fruit and since 2003 it has been released entirely under screwcap.  

Reserve Bin A was not made in 1996, 1997, 1999, 2001, 2002 and 2011.

“Up there with the 2009 Bin A. Brave words indeed! Time will tell. If so, then tantamount to the finest Bin A released this century?!”

Peter Gago

Penfolds Chief Winemaker