Penfolds, the flagship brand of Australian wine giant Treasury Wine Estates, has launched a rare wine called Special Bin 111A that represents “the pinnacle of winemaking endeavour” to honour its 175th anniversary this year.
Made from the 2016 vintage, the wine is a blend of two esteemed South Australian Shiraz vineyards in Clare Valley and Borossa Valley that are usually destined for Penfolds’ ultra-premium Grange wines.
This is the first time in nearly a decade since Penfolds last released a Special Bin wine, according to the company. Its previous 1962 Bin 60A was perhaps Penfolds most renowned Special Bin.
Named after the wine’s oak maturation stack number, Special Bin 111A is the first Special Bin blend of Clare Valley and Barossa Valley.
Grapes were selected from the Botanic Vineyard in Clare Valley and the Gersch Vineyard in Barossa, South Australia.
Botanic Vineyard fruit has been included in five of the last six Grange blends. The Botanic Vineyard lies between Auburn and Leasingham at the southern end of Clare Valley. Grapes were handpicked from Blocks 4B and 8.
In 2020, the Gersch Vineyard in the Moppa district of the North-Western Barossa Valley will commemorate an uninterrupted centenary of supplying grapes to Penfolds.
Gersch Vineyard fruit has been included in four of the last ten Grange blends. Fruit from Blocks 2 and 7 were selected for this wine.
Independent grape growers have been supplying Penfolds for over one and a half centuries. While Penfolds owns substantial vineyard properties across South Australia its relationship with growers, sometimes extending to several generations, is of key importance.
“Bin 111A is an authentic Penfolds Special Bin, rare and true to the Penfolds ‘House Style’. Special Bins are pathfinding vintages and are only released if they offer something extra, different and unique,” says Peter Gago, Penfolds Chief Winemaker.
“These wines make a very important statement about Penfolds and they also represent a heritage of curiosity, experimentation and Australian wine making innovation first started by Penfolds 175 years ago,” he continues.
The wine scored a 100 points from Wine Advocate, and carries a whopping price tag of AU$1500 (US$1017) a bottle at speciality wine stores.