Penfolds RWT Shiraz 2016
Deep magenta, purple on rim. Alluring, invoking. Sweet, aromatic, spicy (cardamom, cinnamon, lavender) … can aromas of butter chicken be mentioned in this context, in a tasting note?! Ascent of tangelo/blood orange spikes – propelling a chinotto/citrus lift. Dusty white chocolate, cocoa butter, and Italian temptations – panna cotta, zabaglione … and what can only be an illusion of tiramisu! Oak – bound to be lurking there somewhere! Camouflaged? Decant more aggressively to reveal? Conceded. It is: glossy, flamboyant, ostentatious. Is not: over-ripe, alcoholic, extracted. Thereby hits the stylistic Barossa/shiraz bulls-eye … with a little help from fastidiously selected French oak. This oak tightens/focuses/encapsulates. Simultaneously structurally tackled by embracing, ripe tannins. This fruit is then surely shrouded, submissive? Never. Archetypal blueberry bavarois and blackberry fruits brazenly strut across the palate. Dense, bountiful, and was there mention of lengthhhhhhhh …?!
Critical AcclaimAll Vintages
The 2016 RWT Shiraz is Penfolds's embodiment of Barossa Valley Shiraz. Aged in French oak (72% new), it offers hints of vanilla and cedar, but more than anything, it showcases the region's bold berry and plum fruit. Full-bodied and rich, verging on decadent, yet firmly structured and long on the finish, it's a powerful yet elegant wine that is capable of being consumed young or aging up to two decades. Having embarked on a career in the wine business right around the time the first RWT was released, it's a treat to see how the latest version is showing. It's a relative bargain among the Penfolds upper echelon.
Striking, with polished, fine-grained tannins that provide a velvety background for a complex array of flavors. Sandalwood, chai tea, gingerbread and white pepper notes mingle with supple raspberry, black cherry coulis, spiced plum and red licorice flavors, with a hint of white truffle. Concentrated and harmonious. The finish goes on and on. Drink now through 2039.
Penfolds has been producing remarkable wines since 1844 and indisputably led the development of Australian fine wine in the modern era. The introduction of Penfolds Grange in 1951 forever changed the landscape of Australian fine wine. Since then a series of stand-out wines both white and red have been released under the Penfolds masthead.
Peter Gago, Penfolds Chief Winemaker and only the 4th custodian of Grange, relishes the opportunity to bring Penfolds to the world stage and is an enthusiastic ambassador and natural educator. Penfolds came to the attention of the US market when 1990 Grange was Wine Spectator’s ‘Wine of the Year’. Since then, Penfolds Grange has become one of the most collectable wines of the world and was honored to grace the front cover, once again, of Wine Spectator, with declarations of Grange as Australia’s Icon.
Historically and presently the most important wine-producing region of Australia, the Barossa Valley is set in the Barossa zone of South Australia, where more than half of the country’s wine is made. Because the climate is very hot and dry, vineyard managers work diligently to ensure grapes reach the perfect levels of phenolic ripeness.
Most of Australia’s largest wine producers are based here and Shiraz plantings date back as far as the 1850s or before. Many of them are dry farmed and bush trained, still offering less than one ton per acre of inky, intense, purple juice.
Marked by an unmistakable deep purple hue and savory aromatics, Syrah makes an intense, powerful and often age-worthy red. Native to the Northern Rhône, Syrah achieves its maximum potential in the steep village of Hermitage and plays an important component in the Red Rhône Blends of the south, adding color and structure to Grenache and Mourvèdre. Syrah is the most widely planted grape of Australia and is important in California and Washington. Sommelier Secret—Such a synergy these three create together, the Grenache, Syrah, Mourvedre trio often takes on the shorthand term, “GSM.”