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Penfolds St. Henri Shiraz 2007

Syrah/Shiraz from Australia
  • JH95
  • RP93
  • W&S91
14.5% ABV
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14.5% ABV

Winemaker Notes

Penfolds St Henri is a highly successful and alternative expression of Shiraz and an intriguing counterpoint to Grange. It is unusual among high quality Australian red wines as it does not rely on any new oak. It was created in the early 1950s (first commercial vintage 1957) and gained a new lease of life in the 1990s as its quality and distinctive style became better understood.

St Henri is rich and plush when young, gaining soft, earthy, mocha-like characters as it ages. It is matured in old, 1460-litre vats that allow the wine to develop, imparting minimal, if any oak character. Although a small proportion of Cabernet is sometimes used to improve structure, the focal point for St Henri remains Shiraz.

Color: Bright, youthful, red. Nose: Pure, real, unadulterated, honest Shiraz... and 100% at that in this 2007 vintage release! Primarily, freshly-pureed mixed-berries - raspberry, mulberry, loganberry, sitting alongside aromas alike those from candied/toffeed apple. Fresh, vibrant, lively. Palate: A complete wine - fruits, tannins, acid, maturation artifacts... all combine to structurally & texturally deliver. Tannins are even throughout, yet serve to tighten palate in middle, with a singular, central focus. Robe markers - crushed shale (and saltbush/ bluebush?) evident... perhaps understandable at over one quarter of blend volume. Poised, yet still lush, generous.

Critical Acclaim

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JH 95
Australian Wine Companion
The colour is bright and deep, the bouquet with black fruits, some meaty aromas and potent spice and licorice components. In the mouth, the flavours are overwhelmingly of black fruits, with echoes of the spice and licorice of the bouquet, and a hint of tobacco. The ripe, but fine, tannins attest to the skills of the winemaking team.
RP 93
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
Very deep garnet-purple colored, the 2007 St Henri Shiraz is a little closed at this stage, revealing subtle earthy notes over crushed blackberries, pencil lead, toast, game, smoky bacon and tree bark. Medium bodied, elegantly fruited and still very tight-knit, the palate offers beautiful purity structured with firm chewy tannins and very crisp acid that should see it through a long life. Consider drinking it 2013 to 2022+.
W&S 91
Wine & Spirits
This vintage of St. Henri shows its old-vine intensity without any jamminess. It's youthful and concentrated, surprisingly smoky for a wine made without any new oak. St. Henri often needs several years in the bottle to show at its best; this '07 is acessible on release, a clean, sleek shiraz for roast lamb.
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Penfolds

Penfolds Wines

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Penfolds Wines, Australia
2007 St. Henri Shiraz
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.

Australia

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A large, climatically diverse country producing just about every wine style imaginable, Australia is often misunderstood by consumers. It is not just a source of blockbuster Shiraz or inexpensive wine with cute critters on the label, though both can certainly be found here. It is impossible to make generalizations about a country this physically massive, but most regions are concentrated in the south of the country and experience either warm, dry weather, or more humid, tropical influence. Australia has for several decades been at the forefront of winemaking technology and has widely adopted the use of screwcaps, even for some premium and ultra-premium bottles.

Shiraz is indeed Australia’s most celebrated and widely planted variety, typically producing bold, supple reds with sweet, jammy fruit and performing best in the Barossa and Hunter Valleys. Cabernet Sauvignon is often blended with Shiraz, and also shines on its own particularly in Coonawarra and Margaret River. Grenache and Mourvèdre (often locally referred to as Mataro) are also popular, both on their own and alongside Shiraz in Rhône blends. Chardonnay is common throughout the country and made in a wide range of styles. Sauvignon Blanc has recently surged in popularity to compete with New Zealand’s distinctive version, and Semillon is often utilized as its blending partner, or in the Hunter Valley, on its own to make complex, age-worthy whites. Riesling thrives in the cool-climate Clare and Eden Valleys. Sticky-sweet fortified wine Rutherglen Muscat is a beloved regional specialty of Victoria. Thanks to the country’s relatively agreeable climate throughout and the openness of its people, experimentation is common and ongoing and there is a vast array of intriguing varieties to be found.

Syrah/Shiraz

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Marked by unmistakable aromatics, a savory palate, and an elegant texture, Syrah is capable of producing fascinatingly complex and long-lived wines with a stunning purple hue. Native to the Northern Rhône, Syrah’s best examples are found in Hermitage and Côte-Rôtie. It is also an important component of the GSM blends of the Southern Rhône and beyond, alongside Grenache and Mourvèdre. Both varietal Syrah and GSM blends are common in Australia and California and are gaining popularity in Washington State. In Australia, Syrah is known by the synonym Shiraz, which tends to indicate a bolder, fruit-driven style of wine, and is occasionally blended with Cabernet Sauvignon for added depth and structure.

In the Glass

At its best, Syrah shows aromas and flavors of purple fruits, fragrant violets, baking spice, white pepper, smoke, and even bacon fat. Many examples from California aim to recreate this savory style, while others focus more on concentrated fruit flavors. In Australia, under the name Shiraz, it shines as that country’s unofficial signature red grape, producing deep, dark, intense, and often jammy reds.

Perfect Pairings

Cool-climate Syrah, with its peppery spices, is a natural match with flavorful Moroccan-spiced lamb dishes, where the spice is more about flavor than heat. With Australian Shiraz, grown in warmer regions, heavy meat dishes with abundant protein and fat are a necessity to match the intensity of the wine.

Sommelier Secret

Due to the success of Australian “Shiraz,” this synonym for Syrah has been adopted by winemakers throughout the world. If the label says “Shiraz,” you can typically expect a plush, fruity, and potent wine made in the Australian style. New World "Syrah" will generally more closely resemble the French style.

SWS167371_2007 Item# 110510

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