Penfolds Grange 2017

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One of those Granges that is immediately appealing. Is this the result of a long ripening period across the Barossa and McLaren Vale, the sources of fruit? Who knows, but there is definitely a case for thinking this is one of the more charming Granges to grace the table.

Impossibly deep purple, dense and moves slow in the glass. The scent is less fruit-inspired, more complex-driven: tight and focussed, everything is dark and exotic and malty and muscular. The palate comes therefore as a bit of a surprise. The sweet fruit rises to meet your lips; the violets and florals, the blackberries, blueberries, macerated raspberries, panforte, and oh so beguiling spice.

The 2017 is all about shiraz – no cabernet to be seen – and so it goes off down a shiraz lane of smoothness and near opulence, well, opulence is a relative term in the Grange vernacular, especially so early in the game. And then the tight tannins arrive on the scene, bringing everything together firmly, resolutely. Of course, having said all of that I am not suggesting we break open a bottle this year. But you can be confident to do it well before it reaches 10. It’s one hell of a charmer.

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