It’s getting to the time where you may be thinking about what wines will be on your own wine rack for the Christmas Holidays.
With that in mind, I have hand picked the list below and I can say I have tasted every single one of the wines and each of them deliver on quality and price, with a real mix of value and fine wines amongst them.
I have taken the pricing in most instances off the website (RRP), and created an offer price on them all as well, so as to encourage you to try a little. To get the pricing below, you must order 6 bottles or more.You can email me firstname.lastname@example.org or call (01) 8867740, and I will process the order for you.
If you take the RRP below of the wines – the pricing comes to RRP - €554.50 while the offer price of them comes to €456.85 so there’s a genuine saving here.
If you would like a blind selection, but not 24 bottles, please let me know and I would enjoy so much picking some of them out for you.
W H I T E S
Chateau de Mercues Chenin Blanc RRP €30 OFFER €24.50
This is my Wine of the year. There, Said, and meant in every way. Château de Mercuès Malbec wines are noble. Georges Vigouroux renovated the château to restore it to its former glory and to qualify it for the Relais & Château network. After the first harvest in 1987, Château de Mercuès became one of few ‘Cru hotels’ where guests can take part fully in the harvest and vinification process.
For four generations, wine has been flowing through the Vigouroux family’s veins. Owners of 147 hectares of vineyards in the Southwest France, the Vigouroux family are the specialists in France when it comes to producing and offering various styles of wines, from the plateau to the different terraces.
This dry Chenin is beautiful, brilliant and its yellow colour immediately attracts your attention. The nose explodes with floral and pear aromas, going on to release vanilla overtones with aeration. The wine is fleshy and very rich on the palate, with white fruit and vanilla flavors. It is quite round and has a characteristic long aftertaste.
Lagar Da Xestosa, Godello, DO Monterrei, Galicia, Spain RRP €18 OFFER €14
a native varietal not dissimilar to albarino. Serve this with smoked salmon over Christmas for a superb food match. A great alternative to Sauvignon Blanc for Starters this Christmas. It's a Gold Medal Winner Adegas Pazo do Mar is dedicated to the production of native varietals, including Godello. They are in pursuit of the perfect balance between traditional and modern methods to achieve characterful wines with distinctive freshness. Their commitment to quality led to Pazo do Mar recently investing in the very best of oenological technology.
Sweet-sour fruit of optimal ripeness and freshness, white flowers, pronounced citric (lemongrass) flavours, good balance and a spicy and citric finish. This is an awesome wine, fullstop.
Palliser Estate Sauvignon Blanc RRP: 25 OFFER: €21.50
This is our 5th year importing this iconic Sauvignon Blanc from Palliser Estate in New Zealand. The 2016 Vintage just literally arrived in today, Wednesday 6th December and it is fresh and booming with juicy succulent fruit.
An iconic Martinborough style of Sauvignon Blanc that is serious, subtle and textural while still oozing with vibrant tropical and citrus fruit characteristics. You will just love this if you have not had it already, that is a promise.
Dry to taste and medium-bodied, the palate possesses elegantly packed, lusciously thirst-quenching and lively flavours of passionfruit, tropical fruits, herbs and green stonefruits. The wine flows a very fine-textured, smooth line unfolding mouthwatering mineral notes, along with fresh lacy acidity lending energy and tension. The flavours carry to a long, lingering finish of passionfruit and minerals. This is an elegantly concentrated, lively and succulent Sauvignon Blanc with flavours of passionfruit, herbs and green stonefruits, along with mouthwatering mineral notes.
Greywacke Sauvignon Blanc 2016 RRP: €25.00 OFFER: €23.00
Fans of Cloudy Bay Sauvignon Blanc may have heard of Kevin Judd, the founding winemaker who made the wine so famous. In 2009 Kevin left Cloudy Bay to Set up Greywacke, a Wine he’s been making ever since.
This sensational new Sauvignon Blanc has taken the world by storm. He seems to have re-captured the same level of intensity and multi-layered taste sensation that made Cloudy Bay itself so famous. However, this has an added accent of minerality which shines through and defines the wine. It is 25% cheaper than Cloudy Bay and is every bit as good.
A potent medley of honeydew and rock melon with notes of blackcurrant intermingled with layers of delicate citrus blossom and a smoky, dill-like complexity. A classic Marlborough vintage showing an exotic salsa-like combination of succulent tropical fruit flavours and that hallmark herbal infusion, finishing with a zesty citrus tang.
‘Kevin Judd is arguably the most famous exponent of Sauvignon Blanc on the planet…he knows how to invest the variety with considerable complexity, using wild yeast to add extra nuances to the exotic lime, gooseberry and stone fruit flavours. Long and very satisfying.’ 93 Points, Tim Atkin, TIMATKIN.COM
‘The very classy 2016…weighty, punchy and dry, overflowing with vibrant, ripe melon/lime … explosively flavoured, it offers great value.’ 5 Stars, Michael Cooper, BUYER’S GUIDE TO NZ WINES 2017
‘Intense gooseberry and fenugreek dominate, with elderflower and honeysuckle providing some richness, followed up by slight mineral notes.’ 91 Points, James Button, DECANTER MAGAZINE (UK)
‘Fresh grass, bay leaves and wild thyme-led nose with hints of lime leaves and lemongrass…lovely creaminess to the texture, great intensity.’ 90 Points, Lisa Perrotti-Brown, EROBERTPARKER.COM
‘Citrus and green fruits, including some candied green fig…managing to be both mouth-filling, almost a little viscous, and intensely fresh at the same time.’ 17 Points, Julia Harding, JANCISROBINSON.COM
Palliser Estate Riesling 2015 RRP: €21.50 OFFER: 16.50
*** Pure Silver Air New Zealand Awards ***
Riesling is known as the grape Winemakers drink. Why? It is so versatile that it can completely change depending on the Terroir, Country of origin, how it is treated in the winery or it’s age. As Riesling ages, almost every single bottle is different, let alone different Rieslings from different countries. This will drink beautifully now, as all New Zealand aromatic wines do. They are superb when young. However, it will age so gracefully over the next 5 years. It is my top tip for Turkey on Christmas day this year, because the 2015 vintage was superb, and it has a few years of age on it now. Don’t confuse this with sweet Riesling. It is absolutely dry, as dry as Sauvignon Blanc so that is no reason to pass this one by!
Palliser Estate are based in Martinborough in New Zealand, on the East coast of the North Island. It is the coolest region in New Zealand, whereas Marlborough is the warmest. The result, is that the growing season there Is 3 weeks longer and the grapes build more flavour and character profile. You will simply love this wine – It is Bursting with freshness, great acidity and a lovely length of flavour – almost a spritz on the finish.
It is a cliché to say it, but have this with a Thai curry where there is some Spice, rather than an Indian curry with lots of chilli. The lightly spiced food, will draw out the acidity in the wine and both will sing harmoniously in your mouth.
Ca I Frati Lugana 2016 RRP: €23.50 NOW: €21.50
If you choose one Wine this month, make it this one. The Dal Cero family has transformed their Cà dei Frati property into a model Italian estate over the past two decades...
It is fresh, crisp, lively and a description does not do justice to the flavour, length and intensity of this wine. What I love about this wine most is its versatility to go with or without food. It is sensational on its own, but it holds a dinner party together when combined with fresh fish, Creamy chowder or shellfish.
Back in 1987, they had 12 hectares of vineyard but now, following the purchase of a large chunk of prime vineyard in 2008, they have 140 hectares. This increase in quantity has been matched by an increase in quality, and today they remain the best producers in Lugana. The family have recently retraced their roots back to the eastern province of Verona to the Lessinia hills to create their interpretation of Amarone.
An exceptional harvest followed by a long ripening period. The wines from 2016 have less concentration and lower alcohol content than other years but more fruit with richer aromas.
The must was fermented in temperature-controlled stainless steel tanks and unoaked to maximise its fresh fruit character. The wine remained on the lees in stainless steel tanks for six months before bottling.
Light yellow in colour with a concentrated but fresh perfume of white flowers, peaches and ripe lemons. On the palate it has excellent depth and balance, with lovely richness and a crisp, lively finish.
Cramele Recas Sauvignon Blanc Fetasca 12% OFFER: €10.00
*** Gold Medal – Best White Wine in Ireland Under €10 2017/2018 Irish Wine Awards, November 2017 ***
A refreshing crisp blend of Sauvignon Blanc and the Romanian grape variety Feteasca Regalá which adds an aromatic, tropical fruit tinged character to the green apple, lime and gooseberry fl avours found in Sauvignon Blanc
Doran Vineyards Chenin Blanc 13% ABV RRP: €19 OFFER: 15.00
Doran Vineyards Pinotage RRP 24 OFFER €17
Doran Vineyards Shiraz RRP €21 OFFER €16
*** Pure Silver Air New Zealand Awards ***
A Malahide man, Edwin Doran is now making wines in South Africa. He sold his last 10 cases of Chateau Petrus to pay for the stainless steel tanks in his winery and the rest is history. This is my pick for Christmas Day White Wine. – It is Sublime, Creamy, textured and fresh. Its crispness and clean minerality makes it the perfect white wine for Christmas Day. Edwin will host a wine dinner in Malahide in January, and we’d love to have you from BBH Wine club there. More about that in January..
Edwin Doran was born in Leixlip and educated in Belvedere College where he was introduced to rugby which, together with food and wine, became his life’s passions.
In July 1974, Edwin set up a travel business in Twickenham which grew into the world’s largest sports tour operator. After nearly 35 years, he sold his company in November 2008 and, continuing to live the dream, bought a 400 acre wine farm in the Voor Paardeberg with his close friend, Andre Badenhorst, a name very familiar in South African wine circles.
A keen wine enthusiast, Edwin built up a very interesting private wine collection over the years and then sold it to pay for the new cellar with its 20 stainless steel tanks.
Doran’s style focuses on their top quality fruit combined with judicious use of oak and a big splash of delicacy & finesse producing a wine which lingers on your back palate - forever. Edwin Doran considers himself to be a very lucky man to have his hobby as his occupation and is very excited to be having theworldwide launch of his premium Doran Family Wines on Irish soil - a real Wine Geese Wineman!
Sancerre Alain Guiberte 13% RRP: €27.00 NOW: €23.00
*** Gold Medal Concours des Ligers à Angers***
In general, the wines are intensely aromatic. In this case, the flavor currant blossom, grapefruit and a hint of iodine A classic aperitif wine was given. On the palate, straightforward, a lightweight and supple, showing this Sancerre volume and a nice finish.."
Chateau Gravas Sauternes 37.5ml 13% ABV RRP: €24 OFFER: €20.00
This is a Hlaf bottle dessert wine from the most famous region of them all for dessert wine – Sauternes.
- Long, meticulous harvests to handpick only the most suitable grapes.
- A fine example of the world's most famous sweet wine.
- Sweet apricot, honey, cinnamon and hints of ginger.
The clay and limestone soils of this Haut Barsac vineyard provide the best environment for the Semillon grown here. The fogs coming in from the local rivers shroud the vineyards and encourage the development of a serendipitous act of nature - noble rot. This fungus attacks the water of the ripe grapes, leaving only the sugars - one of the most important objectives in the vineyard. Thanks Mother Nature!
"Thin, round and well balanced. Of great aromatic complexity, its bouquet evokes candied fruit and white flowers. This Sauternes is a reflection of the exceptional mineral soil of Upper Barsac."
Andean Reserve Malbec, Mendoza, Argentina 14.5% ABV RRP: €17.5 OFFER: €15.00
*** Gold Medal – Best Red Wine in Ireland Under €15 2017/2018 Irish Wine Awards, November 2017 ***
Malbec grows nowhere better than in the rolling foothills of the Andes Mountains. The warm days ripen and enrich the grapes and the cool nights keep them fresh, packing them with extra complexity and depth of fl avour. Ripe bright fruits and a sweet complex silky-rich finish
WolfBlass Presidents Selection Shiraz Australia 14.5% ABV RRP: €22.50 OFFER: €16.50
Flagship wine of WolfBlass, who were named International Wine Makers of the year last year for 2016. They also won 17 Double Gold Medals, 12 Gold Medals and 3 Silver medals at one single wine show in China this year. This is one of their flagship wines and it is one for the Christmas Table. The palate is rich, round and soft, with concentrated berry fruit and great length of flavour. Eighteen months barrel maturation in seasoned and new American and French oak has enhanced the complexity and integration of the fine, velvety tannins.
This wine was matured in a combination of seasoned and new American and French oak barrels for 18 months. Premium parcels of Shiraz were sourced from South Australian vineyards, particularly in McLaren Vale, Barossa and Langhorne Creek.
KanonKop Estate Pinotage, South Africa 14.5% ABV RRP: €35.00 OFFER: €30.00
Last week in London, the IWSC International Wine Awards were held. They are the Oscars for wine and perhaps the most prestigious award of the night, was the International winemaker of the year award, which recognises the outstanding leaps of quality delivered and realised by a winemaker from across the world. Unbelievably, Abrie Beeslaar, won the award for the third time last night for his Pinotage at Kanonkop Estate in South Africa. He also won the award in 2008, 2015 and now 2017.
Kanonkop Estate has been described by those in the know as being the South African equivalent of a Premier Cru or First Growth. The winery is located just outside Stellenbosch. Their absolute commitment to quality and the production of the best quality wines is unrelenting. Investment in their cellar, smaller oak barrels, and a new tasting room / reception for visitors to the Estate are just the most recent projects.
If winning the International Winemaker award wasn’t enough, The Pinotage itself, won an ‘Oustanding Medal’ while the Flagship Estate wine also won an ‘Oustanding Medal’ in the Bordeaux Blend category at the same event. In many ways, It was a clean sweep in the Wine categories. This is something Very Special.
De Alto Reserve Rioja, Haro Spain ***GOLD MEDAL INTERNATIONAL WINE CHALLENGE *** RRP: €22 OFFER €17.50
Rioja is a large region and, like Champagne and the Douro, is dominated by a small number of very large branded producers whose size dictates that they buy-in grapes and bulk wine from a large number of growers and cooperatives.
deAlto believes that one of the strengths of the region is the diversity and potential of its vineyards but, by definition, large brands are not best placed to express this.
They were very lucky that the Manzanos family shared their ideals and through that relationship, we have access to over 250 hectares of prime Rioja vineyards from which we select only the best for deAlto.
One of the traditional obstacles for any grape grower wanting to become a winemaker in Rioja was that to become a Bodega, one had to own a certain number of barrels. Today, the entire classification system is based around the notion that ageing in barrels equates to quality.
And yet some of the most beautiful wines we have tasted are those young wines, still exuberant with fruit, freshness and energy. Moreover, some of the most disappointing wines are those overly oaked wines where you can barely determine the fruit that once was there.
deAlto is different. They start by selecting fruit in the vineyard - pristine fruit whose attributes are perfectly aligned with the styles of wine we love to make (and drink). Carefully picked and sensitively vinified, we aim to preserve fruit, are not afraid of tannin and acidity (they make wine tasty) and use oak to complement, not swamp the fruit.
deAlto wines are released when we think you would like to drink them, not when the authorities say that we should. As a result, some of the best wines may not fall within the traditional Crianza, Reserva, Gran Reserva regime.
Contessa Camilla Montepulciano d’Abruzzo Barrel Fermented and Aged – Think of Top Quality Rioja 13% ABv RRP: 17.50 OFFER: 15.00
Giuseppe di Camillo manages the family business Di Camillo Vini, which was founded in 1900 by his family in Abruzzo. Over the years, the di Camillo family bought more and more vineyards in the best areas around Poggiofiorito. Giuseppe di Camillo skillfully combines tradition with the most modern technologies, which gives him his charming wines with the unbeatable price-quality ratio. Giuseppe di Camillo is the fourth generation of the now 100 years old winery Di Camillo Vini, which offers absolutely excellent wines! What began as a small winery with a few wines has grown into a real top-class estate over the four generations. This montepulciano is a fruit driven flagship wine from the estate.Delicious pure fruit flavours of black cherries and brambles with an interesting peppery touch .
Open this a day before drinking and it will blow you away, that’s a promise
Abel Mendoza Jarrarte DOCa Rioja 14.0% ABV RRP: €23.50 OFFER: €17.00
***Just 72 Bottles Available***
On a recent trip to Spain two weeks ago where all the wine was already bought for Christmas, I found this. Wow. Was I glad, and I immediately acted to bring in as much as I could get hold of before Christmas. It is sensational and is not currently in Ireland. If you like Rioja, Please please try this. The quality of the grapes are what makes this wine so great, not what is done to them in the winery. Less is more they sometime say, and this proves that point nicely.
Modest and passionate about his vineyards Abel and his wife Maite have been making understated wines in San Vicente since 1988. Lying in the shadow of the Sierra Cantabria, Abel has vineyards on the finest parts of the Alavesa. His knowledge and understanding of the soils is enthralling and to taste in his cellar can be an education on the effects different soils have in different years. He wants only to express the fruit and the soil and unlike many Riojans he leaves it more or less at that. He does not want to stamp the wines with any particular style or mark of his own other than his respect for the very natural quality of the grapes.
For two generations Abel Mendoza's family has been farming vineyards in Rioja which are scattered throughout the commune of San Vicente de la Sonsierra (towards the border of Rioja Alta and Alavesa). More than anything in the world, Abel cares for his vineyards, each plot cared for independently and harvest done entirely by hand. The grapes planted are all indigenous including malvasia (a variety widely planted in Rioja in the 18th century), viura, tempranillo and graciano.
Chateau Tour Prignac Haut Medoc, Bordeaux 2010 RRP: €20 OFFER: €16
*** Gold Medal Bordeaux Wine Show ***
2010 Bordeaux set a record as the most expensive vintage in history. It is said that patience is required with this vintage, because the wines will need time. We have 20 cases of Chateau Tour Prignac, and you should buy some for a few reasons: 1. The Price. It is inexpensive Bordeaux relatively speaking to the great wines of the vintage. 2. It is drinking well now and will continue to improve. 3. Watch it evolve over the next 10 years by cellaring some of the bottles away.
More about the Winery: From the very start, the Castel family have specialised in the vineyards of Bordeaux; now, as wine-estate owners and dealers in Grands Crus, they have honed their knowledge and expertise of Bordeaux’s finest wines close to perfection. Château Tour Prignac in the village of Prignac-en-Médoc is named after the towers which adorn the Château; it was given its name very soon after its acquisition by current owners, the Castel family. The property comprises some 300 hectares of woods and meadows. The 144 hectares of vineyard can safely be compared with the greatest of the Greats; planting density is 7,200 vines per hectare. The Cabernets have been replanted and now enjoy the warmest plots, where they can reach perfect maturity. From their classic terroir in the Northern Médoc, Tour Prignac wines show good finesse, delicately honed by the skilled hand of Eric Boissenot. Famed for the elegance of his wines, Mr Boissenot masterfully adds his own particular style to the power of our Médoc, ensuring it is listed as a Cru Bourgeois year after year.
A magnificent purple colour with a powerful nose of dark fruits and hints of rosewood. On the palate the leather and cigar box flavours develop within a smooth structure and a pleasing, elegant finish.
Conde de Valdemar Reserva Rioja 2010 RRP: €23.45 OFFER: €17.50
*** Irish Wine Awards Gold Medal – Best Wine Under €20 announced 10th October 2017 ***
Since the 1980’s Conde Valdemar has become a reference in Rioja. Making wines that stand out because of their quality. Testament to this was the Irish Wine awards recognition that this is the very best wine in Ireland in the Under €20 Category. WineOnline.ie will hold it at this price through Christmas 2017. It is currently in O’Briens at €23.45.
Wines that were nurtured as a great commitment to innovation and which today are a reference in terms of style in Rioja, such as our crianza and reserva aged wines.
Excellent aromatics of black fruit and toasted oak, rich, textured and long lasting - a great example of modern Rioja Reserva from a Family owned and run operation, producing wines of outstanding qual ity.
20 months in American and French oak barrels.Blend: 90% Tempranillo, 10% Mazuelo
Estate Grown from the family vineyards in Oyon, Logrono and Ausejo
From Rioja Alavesa - everyone’s favourite Spanish wine region with its storied wine making traditions and beautiful landscape. Ripe opulent wine dripping with ripe black cherry flavours and lingering complex fruit and spice notes
Torre Del Falasco Valpolicella Ripasso 2014 RRP: €20 OFFER: €17
*** Bronze Medal Decanter World Wine Awards 2017 ***
Arguably one of the greatest wines we sell from Italy. No sooner had the 2014 vintage been released in August when Decanter Magazine announced that it won a Bronze medal in the World Wine Awards. It is Rich, elegant, easy drinking, smooth and delicious.
This wine is made in the traditional 'ripasso' method, where a second fermentation of the wine takes place on the skins of the grapes used to make Amarone - a typically Italian way of getting the most out of produce. A rich style, with lovely aromas of plums, cherries and dark chocolate and flavours of raisins and nutmeg. Ideal with red meats and spicy Italian dishes but the wine is also suitable for vegetarians and vegans.
Aromas of dried cherry and dark plums are followed by hints of mocha and dark chocolate on the nose. A powerful, full-bodied palate opens with a spiced fruit character and supportive tannins. Raisin and candied peel notes come from the 'ripasso' method and are layered with rounded, ripe cherry flavours. The finish is long with added spicy nutmeg notes.
Masi Toar Valpolicella 2012 RRP: 23.85 OFFER: 20.85
Made from 3 grape varieties, this wine includes, Corvina and Rondinella. What makes it exceptional, is the 10% inclusion of a lost variety, thought to be extinct, called Oseleta. One of the vineyard hands came across one single Vine in the vineyard that held small intense berries, and tests proved it was the lostr variety of Oseleta. What this brings to the wine is an intensity of fruit, and a lot of tannin. This means that this valpolicella is capable of ageing. Compare now to the Torre Falasco wine, but also store a few bottles and see how this develops over the next 8 years. There is great potential, and it is already 5 years old.
Considered “the Valpolicella of tomorrow”, it is surprisingly intense and full-bodied with great tannins. Unexpectedly fruity, rich and approachable. The nose combines familiar Corvina aromas with the firm character of Oseleta, the forgotten native variety rediscovered by Masi. The power and audacity of this wine is expressed in its name, Toar, which refers to the volcanic rocks of its vineyards of origin. The result is an incredibly rich concentrated wine with great depth of fruit. Excellent with grilled or roasted meats.
Palliser Estate Pencarrow Pinot Noir RRP €27 OFFER €23.50
This stylish Pinot from New Zealand is outstanding value. The nose exhibits wild strawberry, cherry and spice aromas and the palate has rich complex varietal flavours with lovely velvety texture. Pinot lovers take note! Medium-full bodied, the palate is lusciously rich and juicy with sweet flavours of dark-red berry and cherry fruit entwined with subtle nuances of dark herbs, unfolding fragrant violet and dark-red florals providing aromatic lift. The fruit is supported by very fine-grained tannins that provide structure and grip, but enable accessibility, and the acidity is fresh and lacy, lending energy and vitality. The wine flows to a rich and succulent finish of aromatic dark-red fruits with herb nuances. This is a deliciously juicy Pinot Noir with sweet dark-red berry and cherry fruits along with herbal detail and fragrant florals on a fine-grained palate.
Penfolds Bin 8 Cabernet Shiraz RRP €31.99 OFFER €22.00 (Just 54 Bottles Available)
Penfolds Bin 8 2012
Penfolds Bin 8 Cabernet Shiraz (57% Cabernet, 43% Shiraz) is deep youthful red in appearance. On the nose the Cabernet grape comes through with aromas of black olive, graphite and red berry fruits. The spice of the Shiraz lurks in the background. The palate is vibrant and ripe, with red fruits that are integrated with oak (French and American) and compliant tannins.
Spicy & Flavoursome Reds
Medium term cellaring (up to 15 years)
Australia, South Eastern Australia
92 points James Suckling
A newer wine that is composed of 57% Cabernet Sauvignon and 43% Shiraz, sourced from the Barossa Valley, Wrattonbully, McLaren Vale, Padthaway and Langhorne Creek. The nose is quiet striking, there's a nicely crafted oak element layered into the mix, the Shiraz comes across flambouyant and chocolatey, the Cabernet adds leafy notes. There’s a little dark olive and plenty of dark fruit flavours on the palate, great depth and well-judged ripeness. This is succulent and rich, quite silky and even, showing plums and spice, deep red and purple fruit flavours, some gentle mocha oak and smooth, approachable layered tannins. (3/2014)
90 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
- A blend of 57% Cabernet Sauvignon and 43% Shiraz, the deep garnet-purple colored 2012 Bin 8 Cabernet Shiraz is a little closed on the nose, with pure blackcurrant and blackberry notes coming through along with some baking spices in the background. Medium-bodied with classic flavors, it is quite expressive in the mouth, with low to medium levels of grainy tannins carrying it through the long finish. 90+(LPB) (2/2014)
90 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar
- Glass-staining ruby. Textbook Cabernet aromas of cherry, cassis, pipe tobacco and woodsmoke, with a vanilla undertone and a touch of cracked pepper. Offers pliant black and blue fruit flavors, a note of bitter chocolate and good spicy kick, plus a subtle licorice nuance. Finishes sweet, gently tannic and long, leaving smoke and dark berry notes behind. (JR) (7/2014)
The Bin 8 release is a serious bargain in the Penfolds iconic "Bin" range. Introduced in 2003 as an understudy to Bins 138 and 389, it has gained quite a following of its own and we at K&L are huge fans! The wine is composed of 57% Cabernet Sauvignon and 43% Shiraz sourced from some of Penfolds' top vineyards across Barossa Valley, Wrattonbully, McLaren Vale, Padthaway, and Langhorne Creek. It is designed to be rich, powerful, lush, and accessible on release. The wine spends 12 months in predominantly older oak (both French and American) that once housed its prestigious siblings 389 and 128. The wine is dominated by nicely saturated rich, dark fruits with some redder notes showing with air. There is real Cabernet character here with cigar box and cedar but also a slightly fleshier, more exuberant feel on the palate from the Shiraz component. They work together very well in this stunning wine. Classic Penfolds styling is added by the toasty, rich but well-integrated oak and really makes this a very complete and compelling wine at this super competitive price point! This is a wine that is sure to bring a lot of enjoyment to many drinkers.