VINEYARD REGION Barossa Valley, McLaren Vale, Clare Valley, Magill Estate
The 2009 Grange Shiraz is a comprised of 84% Barossa, 8% McLaren, and a little Clare Valley and a little Magill fruit with a small 2% of Cabernet Sauvignon in the blend. At this youthful stage, this deep garnet-purple coloured wine puts forward a vivid expression of blackberry preserve aromas amid underlying cassis, black cherry, spice box, char-grilled meat and chocolate box notes. Surprisingly medium to full-bodied (it smells much fuller!) with taut flavours that are very closed in the mouth, it has firm, chewy tannins to structure through the long and earthy finish. Drink it 2018 to 2035+.
MATURATION 18 months in 100% new American oak hogsheads
VINTAGE CONDITIONS Near-optimum rainfall over winter, followed by dry, mild conditions over spring provided a good environment for budburst and an ideal start to the growing season with canopies developing well. Climatic conditions favoured flowering and set with mild and calm weather, however there was some shatter in Shiraz across parts of the state resulting in small crops for many regions. Some early to mid-December summer rainfall was followed by conditions drying up very quickly and continuing until the end of February. Summer was hot with some extreme heat but cool conditions returned in February and March, allowing the fruit to ripen across a long harvest with balanced acidities and excellent tannin ripeness. An elegant, yet still powerful follow up to the conditions brought about in the preceding 2008 vintage.
COLOUR Youthful at rim. Dense magenta.
NOSE At once Grange – formic, assertive, and powerful… with overt barrel-ferment markers. Bright, and noticeably fragrant/perfumed at this time of tasting, in its fifth year immediately prior to release. Racy red fruits clasp onto red liquorice, aniseed aromatics. Red meats (corned beef?) with pepper and spice, rumtopf. Patiently, panforte/mascarpone/malt/dried fi g aromatics appear in a second wave. No hurry – the curtain is up, the stage reserved for decades!
PALATE Captivating/tempting/alluring – yet another subtle variation on the theme/expression of this thing called Grange. Voluptuous and generous, yet poised and harmonious. Assured, and not attempting to overstate its weight/extract/presence. Immediately apparent flavours of chocolate, mocha, cola and juicy plum entwine and converge toward the panforte impression aromatically sensed earlier. Tight and defined, with excellent grip – savoury/tannic. These tannins are both integrated and balanced, colluding with 100% new oak that is all but completely absorbed.
Ever since the ambitious, experimental trials and tribulations of Max Schubert throughout the 1950s, to conceive and formulate the nation's first growth, Grange has maintained its place as Australia's most prestigious wine. A Shiraz of extraordinary dimension and power, richly textured, intensely concentrated and packed with fruit sweetness, the tasting of any Penfolds Grange regardless of vintage, is a profound and unforgettable experience. Rich and exciting in it's youth, Grange develops into an immensely complex, beguiling wine that seduces the senses.
An Australian icon, Grange represents a tradition that is totally uncompromising. Grange has bypassed the fads and trends of modern fashions in the sense that it has maintained an integrity of style and remained true to its origins. Penfolds Grange is the quality standard against which the finest efforts of Australian winemaking can only aspire. Grange is made to an inimitable style which defines the vagaries of vintage and uniqueness of Australian Shiraz. Vintage 2007 was sourced from exceptional sites in the Coonawarra and Barossa Valley, as well as the historic Magill Estate in Adelaide Hills. The finished Grange was matured eighteen months in a selection of exclusively new American oak hogsheads