Penfolds’ first-ever French wines capture the spirit of Bordeaux

·3-min read

Calling all oenophiles! This August, Penfolds will be releasing its annual Collection that comprises three country of origin portfolios — Australian, Californian and for the first time in Penfolds history, the inaugural French wines. 

The global approach to winemaking is changing. Withstanding the pandemic and the aftermaths of Covid-19, as well as the inevitable effects of global warming, winemakers like Penfolds are in agreement that 2020 has not been an easy year. 

For Penfolds, the only constant the ‘House Style’ that allows and embraces the freedom to explore premium viticultural regions across Australia and the world — unrestricted by region or vineyard. With a rich tradition of research, curiosity, and wine trial, Penfolds winemaking endeavours have not only covered the rich terrains of Australia, but also Napa and Paso Robles California in the USA, and now in Bordeaux France. 





The partnership with the respected French winemaking House, Dourthe has birthed the Penfolds II Cabernet Shiraz Merlot. Combining the expertise of Penfolds Chief Winemaker Peter Gago and Dourthe Chief Winemaker Fréderic Bonnaffous, this new bottle blends grapes from Bordeaux (71%) and South Australia (29%) for the most harmonious results. 

The name ‘Penfolds II’ represents two winemakers coming together to express quality through a harmonious blend of traditional French winemaking techniques, and time-honoured Australian winemaking methods — where two hemispheres meet. Made from the 2019 vintage, the final wine was blended and bottled in South Australia by Penfolds winemakers.

The two new French wines: 2019 Penfolds FWT 585 (left) and 2019 Penfolds II Cabernet Shiraz Merlot
The two new French wines: 2019 Penfolds FWT 585 (left) and 2019 Penfolds II Cabernet Shiraz Merlot

Another bottle that will be released in August is the 2019 Penfolds FWT 585: A trial Bin wine made of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Petit Verdot. The notion of perfecting winemaking has funnelled down to this beautiful blend that represents the spirit of Bordeaux and the code of Penfolds. The trial wine is a collaborative result between Cambon la Pelouse Winery with Penfolds Senior Winemaker Emma Wood — on the ground, in the cellars, and in the vineyards. Yes, very hands on!

Peter Gago walking us through the Penfolds vineyard.
Peter Gago walking us through the Penfolds vineyard.

“Many great Penfolds wines were born from experimentation and trial; RWT 798 Barossa Valley Shiraz, Yattarna Bin 144 1951 Grange — and now FWT 585. The wines made in France pay respect to French terroir; yet one thing remains overly consistent — the Penfolds stamp. Just like our Californian wines, we have the French sun above and soil beneath, but everything in between is Penfolds!,” expresses Gago. 

Alongside these two French novelties are the 2022 Australian release led by the 68th consecutive release of Penfolds 2018 Grange that has been a testament to the multi-regional blending philosophy of the Grange DNA. But through great managing of the vineyard and working together with Mother Nature, it continues to push the brand and its talented winemakers to constantly pivot and look into the best ways to produce the best wines. Some of the standouts include Bin 138 from the Barossa Valley, St Henri, Bin 28, and the must-have Bin 389, also known as the Baby Grange for its unmatched quality at an affordable price. 



There’s also the Penfolds Californian release that comprises the 2019 Bin 149 Cabernet Sauvignon, Bin 704 Cabernet Sauvignon, and Bin 600 Cabernet Shiraz. The Bin 149 Cabernet Sauvignon gives off rich, blackberry and sweet notes on the first sip with a blooming floral scent on the nose. The Bin 704 Cabernet Sauvignon has a deep rich colour with beautifully balanced flavours and lots of tannins. Bin 600 on the other hand expresses a metallic finish with subtle fruity notes of Shiraz, a rich and rounded mouthfeel to the palate — and a great wine, perfect for any gastronomic occasion. 

Penfolds Chief Winemaker Peter Gago during an exclusive tasting session at 67 Pall Mall, Singapore recently.
Penfolds Chief Winemaker Peter Gago during an exclusive tasting session at 67 Pall Mall, Singapore recently.

The Penfolds Collection 2022 wines will be available in selected retailers across Malaysia starting August 2022, as well as at Penfolds Cellar Doors (Magill Estate Winery and Barossa Valley Cellar Door) in Australia — obvs if you happen to be down under, why not?

Find out more about the latest Penfolds Collection 2022 on its official website. 

The post Penfolds’ first-ever French wines capture the spirit of Bordeaux appeared first on Lifestyle Asia Kuala Lumpur.

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