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1991 Penfolds St. Henri Shiraz
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- Cellar 3 - 4 years (2002-2003)
- ABV 13.5%
- Closure: Cork
The below tasting notes were made at the 50th Anniversary Dinner of Penfolds Grange at Magill in South Australia on November 26th 2001. They were written in less than ideal tasting conditions. The pomp and ceremony of the occasion and low level lighting, together with the constant chatter on the table, all made a less than perfect tasting environment. I am sure, many of the wines would have scored a point or two higher under perfect tasting conditions and, thus the notes are to be read with this proviso in mind. - Nick Chlebnikowski
Opaque crimson colour. The nose is restrained, with aroma of earth, truffle and spice. The palate is quite developed, with the fruit fading, however, there is considerable tertiary flavours of earth and leather. Fine grained, dry lingering tannins, followed by aftertaste of earth and truffle.
Cellar 3-4 years (2005-2006)
Blessed with another great vintage in South Australia, the 1991 release is destined to be one of the classic Penfolds St. Henri vintages - showing austere but powerful fruit character - it yearns for a decade or more in the cellar to realise its full potential.
Penfolds St. Henri, like Grange, has built a tradition over many years as a wine renowned for its rich fruit flavour and longevity. The St. Henri style, however, emphasises elegance. The grapes are selected for sophisticated fruit character rather than intensity and, in contrast to other Penfolds reds, prominent oak is not an important element of the style.
Matured in large oak casks and older American oak hogsheads for 12 months. Dense brick-red in colour with a touch of crimson. Complex and refined, it has a somewhat closed nose at first. Left standing, it displays spicy and peppery Shiraz characters with underlying oak and maturation characters. This highly individual, fruit-driven red is full bodied, rich and complex. The palate has intense, spicy Shiraz flavour with great depth and power, balanced by firm grainy tannins to give an incredibly tight and closed structure. The tight structure and perfect balance between fruit, oak and tannin indicate that this wine was built to last and will repay extended cellaring for 10 to 20 years, to develop into a classic St. Henri.