A fascinating wine – the third and last of the multi-vintage Penfolds Grange releases brings together wines from the 2010, 2012, 2014, 2016 and 2018 vintages, apparently in equal measure. Grange as a young wine is generally monolithic and far from its best with much of the fruit complexity still hidden behind a cloak of structure and oak. This coming together of multiple vintages however is a very different beast, already drinking remarkably well thanks to the approachability that those older vintages provide while retaining its youthful vitality. It is also the best of the multi-vintage Granges – a fitting sendoff.
Deeply coloured – there is First Growth power and poise to be found here, in spades. The fruit is muscular with aromas of black olive tapenade, earth, and chocolate with some cedar notes all well framed by young and sweet oak that will come back in time. The palate is then dense but lively, with an extraordinary core of brooding, robust dark fruits. Despite firm tannins, it is also seamless with chocolatey complexity also supported by quince and dark spices. There is a richness but also an enveloping softness before it glides into a finely balanced finish with what seems like almost eternal length. Many statement wines do not live up to the hype – this one does and even exceeds expectations. Will it hit perfection and 100 points – only time will tell…..