1992 Penfolds "Grange" Shiraz South Australia

SKU #200050 96 points James Halliday

 Outstanding dense but bright purple-red; a powerful, concentrated bouquet with blackberry, mulberry and licorice aromas, and the oak seemingly more restrained than is usual. A powerful but impeccably balanced and structured wine, redolent of black cherry, licorice and mulberry fruit flavours; oozing class, breeding and staying power. It will be very interesting to watch the development of this wine versus the much-vaunted '90 and '91 vintages. (Tasted 4/1997) Drink by: 2022.  (7/ 2011)

94 points Wine Spectator

 Ripe, smoky and spicy, this is a wine of extraordinary subtlety and complexity, powerful without showing too much muscle. It layers its anise, black cherry and blackberry flavors to keep them zingy through the finish. Shows a lot of depth and surprising restraint. Best to cellar until 2002 to 2005.  (10/ 1997)

92 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 This is a very aromatic Grange that seems to be the product of a vintage where the wines are showing extremely well young. It is dense purple, with a sweet blackberry/cherry nose and some subtle cedar and licorice in the background, unctuously textured, thick, full, without as many nuances of some of the greatest vintages of Grange, but very concentrated and dense. Anticipated maturity: now-2017.  (2/ 2002)

K&L Notes

92 points, Neil Martin: "This is an excellent Grange that is really coming into its own. The palate is ripe and succulent, with kirsch, menthol and dark fruits bursting from the glass as if they have just been let out of prison. The palate is full-bodied, layers of sweet, ‘slutty’ black fruits that are rounded and caressing in texture. Again there is that hint of menthol, but the overall impression is that this Grange has more to give in the future. Sit on it for a while. Drink 2011-2020+ Tasted December 2008." (Wine Journal, eRobertParker.com, 7/2009)

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Price: $324.99

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Varietal:

Shiraz/Syrah

- One of France's noblest black grape varieties, Syrah is known for its intense and distinctive perfume reminiscent of briar fruit, tar, spice and black pepper and its firm structure. One of few black grape varietals frequently vinified on its own, the best examples of Syrah come from the Northern Rhône, particularly Hermitage, but also Côte-Rôtie, Cornas, Crozes-Hermitage and St-Joseph. These wines are very astringent in their youth, though some Crozes-Hermitage and St-Joseph can be enjoyed young, relatively speaking. Given the requisite patience, though, these wines can reveal amazing complexity and secondary fruit characteristics like plum and blackcurrant as well as subtle hints of smoke and flowers. In the Southern Rhône, Syrah is used to add structure and complexity to wines dominated by Grenache and complemented by Mourvèdre, like the more immediately drinkable Côte du Rhônes, as well as the long-lived wines of Châteauneuf-du-Pape. In recent years, plantings of Syrah have spread throughout the Languedoc-Roussillon where it is produced on its own or blended with other varietals. Outside of France, the most important Syrah growing country is easily Australia, where it is called Shiraz. Quality levels here depend greatly on yields and geography, and the wines range from bold, fruity and easy-drinking to intense and ageable, like the famed Penfolds Grange. Often bottled on its own, in Australia Syrah is also can be blended with Grenache and Mourvèdre, as in the Southern Rhône, and is increasingly combined with Cabernet Sauvignon. Syrah has also been steadily increasing in popularity in California, thanks to a group of advocates called the Rhône Rangers. Its most successful iterations come from the Central and Sonoma Coasts, where winemakers are pushing boundaries and creating some incredible wines. In recent years Syrah has also found a number of proponents in Washington State, which is definitely a region to watch for this variety.
Country:

Australia

- While it is true that the greatest strides in Australian winemaking have come in the last 30 years or so, commercial viticulture began as early as the 1820s and has developed uninterrupted ever since. The majority of the great Region are in the southeastern area of the continent, with the Barossa Valley, Claire Valley, McLaren Vale, and Coonawarra in South Australia, the Yarra Yarra Velley and Pyrenees in Victoria and the Upper and Lower Hunter Valleys in New South Wales. Many of the wines from Southeastern Australia are based on Shiraz or Cabernet Sauvignon and various blends including Grenache and Mourvedre. In Western Australia, along the Margaret River, great strides are being made with Pinot Noir as well as Bordeaux-styled reds. There are also many world-class releases of Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc and Riesling from the land Down Under. While many equate Aussie wines with "value", there are more than a few extremely rare and pricey options, which never fail to earn the highest ratings from wine publications and critics throughout the world. Click for a list of bestselling items from Australia.
Sub-Region:

South Australia