2014 Penfolds Grange (1.5L)

Syrah from South Australia, Australia

B-21 Top Recommendation
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The flagship 2015 Grange is a monster of wine and one of those rare wines that blends power and elegance perfectly. Revealing a saturated purple color, it’s seemingly more forward and seductive than past great vintages, which I suspect is due to the incredible purity of fruit as well as the wine’s flawless balance than any change in winemaking or stylistic shifts. I also think the acidity is healthy, and the 2015 tips the scales at 14.5% alcohol, which is certainly in the sweet spot, if not tame, for beautifully ripe Syrah these days. A blend of 98% Shiraz and 2% Cabernet Sauvignon that spent 20 months in new American oak hogsheads, it offers an extraordinary perfume of sweet crème de cassis, lead pencil shavings, camphor, Asian spices, licorice, and wildflowers. This is followed by a full-bodied, powerful yet incredibly seamless and elegant Shiraz that has no hard edges, a big, dense mid-palate, ripe tannins, and a great finish. Coming close to rivaling the 1986, which has always been a benchmark vintage of Grange for me, the 2015 offers a more polished, elegant, approachable style. Vintage comparisons aside, this is a legendary example of Grange in the making. The savvy wine lovers out there will give this 7-8 years of bottle age (I’ll probably be out of bottles by then) and enjoy over the following 2-3 decades.

– Jeb Dunnuck

98WA
98WS
97JD
97WE
97AWC
96W&S
96JS

Rich, concentrated and intense, the 2014 Grange delivers exactly what we've come to expect from this Penfolds icon wine. It's full-bodied, velvety in feel and loaded with plummy fruit, framed in vanilla and cedar. Dense, powerful and tannic, it should prove to be long lived, even by Grange standards. Gago doesn't rate the vintage overall that highly, but he says the selection this year for Grange was a bit more stringent and that production levels were just average. There are still over 1,000 cases for the United States.

98 points, Joe Czerwinski, Wine Advocate (Oct 2018)

At first glance, this is a purely indulgent wine, with gobs of creamy, milk chocolate–laden maraschino cherry, raspberry framboise and Earl Grey tea aromas. Then wave after wave of elements start filling in, with toasted cumin, peppermint oil, Kalamata olive and white pepper notes, combining into an almost overwhelming amount of details. Becomes indulgent again on the long, lush finish. Drink now through 2035. 1,088 cases imported.

98 points, MaryAnn Worobiec, Wine Spectator (Mar 2019)

It’s always a pleasure to taste what unquestionably the reference point wine for Australia, and the 2014 Grange doesn’t disappoint. From a more difficult vintage for South Australia, it’s a blend of 98% Shiraz and 2% Cabernet Sauvignon that spent 20 months in all new American oak hogsheads, hitting a normal alcohol level of 14.5 with a healthy pH and acidity. Inky purple/blue colored, it offers a rocking bouquet of ripe plums, blueberries, vanilla bean, espresso, and graphite, with hints of mint and flowers developing with time in the glass. Deep, rich, fabulously concentrated, and pure on the palate, it stays tight and compact, with notable precision and length. It’s a seriously structured yet impeccably balanced effort that needs a solid 5-6 years to shed some tannin and gain volume, and will keep for 2+ decades after that.

97 points, Jeb Dunnuck (Dec 2018)

The latest vintage of this iconic wine is more approachable and elegant than in previous years. This 98% Shiraz and 2% Cabernet Sauvignon blend offers an ocean of aromas: plum, mocha, coffee, tomato leaf, black olive, ground pepper, cedar, wet tarmac and sage. These tones swell toward a beautifully balanced palate that is powerful yet poised and silky in texture. The American oak is there but feels quieter than it has in the past, letting other nuances wash ashore, all held afloat by fine-grained herb and salt-flecked tannins. While other vintages seem untouchable in their youth, the 2014, with time in decanter, could offer immediate gratification yet still cellar well through 2044.

97 points, Christina Pickard, Wine Enthusiast (Apr 2019)

98% shiraz, 2% cabernet sauvignon from the Barossa Valley, McLaren Vale, Wrattonbully, Coonawarra, Clare Valley and Magill Estate, matured for 20 months in new American hogsheads. Excellent colour for age; the ultra-fragrant and expressive bouquet implacably draws you in; a great deal of work must have gone into the blending of the components and drawing them seamlessly. An aristocratic Grange with all its components in utter harmony.

97 points, James Halliday, Halliday Wine Companion (Aug 2019)

Grange is a blend from Penfolds’ top vineyards and best growers, including fruit from Barossa Valley, McLaren Vale, Wrattonbully (a first for Grange), Coonawarra, Clare Valley and the Magill Estate in the Adelaide Hills, where the winery got its start. That fruit selection finishes fermentation in new American oak barrels, where it then ages for 20 months. Peter Gago, who oversees the winemaking team, notes that winter and early-season rains differed substantially from Barossa and Clare down to McLaren Vale and Coonawarra. It was a warm summer to the north, with