Vinous 91 points - Pale yellow. High-pitched, mineral-laced citrus and pit fruit aromas show very good clarity and a touch of marzipan. Spicy and precise on the palate, offering juicy nectarine and Meyer lemon flavors that flesh out with air. Closes with strong spicy cut, a hint of smokiness and clinging persistence.
Wine Spectator 90 points - A tight, crisp and steely style, with tangy tangerine, lime and green pineapple flavors, lingering on the jazzy finish. This has plenty of room to grow in the bottle. Drink now through 2020. 949 cases imported.-HS
(Aug 31 2014)
Wine Advocate 89 points - At this youthful stage the 2013 Bin 311 Chardonnay starts with a little SO2 jutting out, but aeration reveals underlying notes of white peaches, Golden Delicious apples and grapefruit with hints of clotted cream and allspice. Light-bodied with a faint veil of silkiness to the texture, it has a good amount of tightly wound, cooler climate flavors and a long finish. 949 bottles were made. Drink it 2015 to 2019+. (Feb 2014)
The Bin 311 style typically expresses a mineral acid backbone, complemented by barrel fermentation, subtle lees influence and sensitive maturation in seasoned oak. Minimal filtration is employed, preserving the elegant fruit flavours.
|Shallow fried calamari with aioli
Chicken caesar salad
Veal scallopini with fresh lemon
|Australia’s winemaking history of less than two hundred years is brief by European measures though, like Europe, punctuated by periods of extreme success and difficult times. From the earliest winemaking days Penfolds has figured prominently and few would argue the importance of Penfolds’ influence on Australia’s winemaking psyche.
Without the influence of Penfolds the modern Australian wine industry would look very different indeed. Sitting comfortably outside of fad and fashion, Penfolds has taken Australian wine to the world on a grand stage and forged a reputation for quality that is without peer.
Penfolds’ reputation for making wines of provenance and cellaring potential might suggest a mantle of tradition and formality is the preferred attire of a company with so much history to defend. But to label Penfolds as simply an established and conventional winemaker, would be to confuse tradition with consideration and to overlook the innovative spirit that has driven Penfolds since its foundation, and continues to find expression in modern times.
If there is anything traditional about Penfolds, it is the practice of constantly reviewing the wines it already does well, and continuously evolving and refining styles as vineyards mature and access to ever older and more varied vineyard sites improves.