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Wednesday 7 September 2016

Unveiling the new Penfolds premium wine releases

Penfolds chief winemaker Peter Gago is one of the busiest men on the planet, constantly crisscrossing the globe to host tastings of Grange and Penfolds' other wine icons.

For the next few weeks, however, Gago is busier than usual, attending some of the 25th-anniversary Penfolds Re-Corking Clinics, as well as hosting media tastings for the new-release Penfolds Collection 2016. Yesterday it was Sydney's turn. 

The only problem is, much as I would like to tell you all about the new releases, I and all the other members of the media, are sworn to secrecy to "ensure an even playing field". 

I can tell you we tasted 21 wines, all undecanted, and the same wines will be tasted from Melbourne to London, Vancouver to New York, over the next few weeks. Oh, and an event in Paris, as well.  

Gago says the new wines, which stretch over five vintages from 2012 to 2016, "each have a distinct character, quality and provenance".

We finished up with a fun shot of the legendary Penfolds Fifty-Year-Old Tawny series three, of which 330 bottles are made a year and one will set you back $3550 should you be able to get your hands on one.

All of us who have tasted the wines will be able to unleash our thought bubbles on the wines, including the long-awaited 2012 Grange from a classic vintage, on October 6. The wines will be released to the public on October 20. 

I think I'm allowed to say some of the wines are well worth waiting for. 

Gago is certainly relieved to be unveiling a new Grange after the 2011 wine came from one of the most difficult vintages on record. 

'That's the other side of the game," he said. "In 2011 we had to use every winemaking trick in the book. In 2012 it was very different."

Just how different you will have to wait to find out. Sorry. 


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