Penfolds Wines, Barossa Valley, Australia

What is there left to say about Penfolds? One of the most iconic producers not only in Australia, but possibly the world, their wines have almost become a thing of legend. Beginning in 1844 when Dr Christopher Penfold and his wife Mary planted the cuttings that they had brought with them on the trip to Australia, it was Mary that took the reigns of running the company as Christophers medical reputation grew. Penfolds reputation was cemented in wine history when winemaker Max Schubert began an experimental project in creating a long lasting wine from multiple vineyard sites across multiple regions across Australia. An idea that had never done before and broke all the rules of winemaking, Penfolds Grange is a true benchmark in wine history. The project that was originally shut down by the management at Penfolds and Max had to carry it on in secret for the next 3 vintages. It was eventually ordered to restart in 1960 and almost immediately began to gain critical acclaim and awards, today it is considered to be an equivalent of the Bordeaux First Growths and has been given a heritage listing in South Australia. Continuing to go against the grain, Penfolds also created St Henri Shiraz. Another multi regional blend first made in 1953, at a time when much of Australia was producing wines with heavy use of new oak, St Henri Shiraz only ages in large, old oak and instead focusses on varietal expression, still rich in it’s youth and capable of developing a staggering amount of complexity as it ages.