2015 Penfolds "Bin 389" Cabernet-Shiraz South Australia (Elsewhere $63) SKU #1328947

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JH 97 JS 96 RP 93
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Professional Reviews

K&L Notes

Winemaker's notes: "Bin 389 is often referred to as ‘Baby Grange,’ in part because components of the wine are matured in the same barrels that held the previous vintage of Grange. First made in 1960, by the legendary Max Schubert, this was the wine that helped to forge Penfolds solid reputation with red wine drinkers combining the structure of Cabernet Sauvignon with the richness of Shiraz. Bin 389 also exemplifies the judicious balance of fruit and oak." 96 points Wine Front: "It’s a wine with a ‘wow’ introduction. It throws beautiful, beautiful aroma. It’s distinguished by it. It’s sweet, pudding-like, like fresh vanilla, like lemon delicious. I went to taste this wine and couldn’t get past the nose; I just wanted to go on enjoying its aromatics. It’s smells every bit Penfolds but every bit itself. The palate is true to established form, with blackcurrant and bay leaf notes rigged to a powerful motor of tannin. Creamy/vanillin oak gets on with business too but again the fruit stares it down. From every angle this is a belter of a Bin 389. It’s best consumed any time between now and the apocalypse, or thereabouts."

Staff Reviews

  • Stefanie Juelsgaard
    By: Stefanie Juelsgaard
    11/5/2017
    K&L Staff Member
    What an unconventional, but genius combination of varietals to blend into one wine! Often what is missing from Shiraz can be the erathy tones and structure that Cab showcases so well, and Cab Sauv's fruit can be lost behind the tannin and savory notes. To combine these two perfectly balances the best qualities of both so the sum is greater than their parts. This has the fruit from the Shiraz that makes this big wine more approachable now, but the backbone from the Cab to hold up to whatever you pair it with. Nothing flabby or overdone here. Just extremely well-balanced, tasty, tasty wine.
    Top Value!
  • Ryan Woodhouse
    By: Ryan Woodhouse
    11/3/2017
    K&L Staff Member
    I have been eagerly awaiting the new Penfolds releases as the 2015 vintage has been turning out some stunning wines in South Australia. With Penfolds' unrivaled strength in depth across the premium growing regions of the state I suspected their wines would be some of the best from them in recent years (or decades). Once the scores started to drop I couldn't wait to get my hands on some bottles to see if the wines tasted as good as the hyperbolic reviews suggested. Finally this week I got them in my glass and across my palate, and boy are you in for a treat. This Bin 389 is often a top pick from the stable. Affectionately known as "Baby Grange" this wine is matured in American Oak Hogsheads that held the prior year of Penfolds' iconic "Grange". This means top notch oak, the best money can buy, polishing this wines long, fine tannins. Bin 389 is a selection of premium parcels of Cabernet and Shiraz from vineyards in Coonawarra, Barossa, McLaren Vale and Wrattonbully. The Cabernet provides and beautiful structural framework and the Shiraz fleshes out the rest. Aromas of black and blue fruit, huckleberry, tobacco leaf, mint and cedar. On the palate the fruit is generous, juicy, bright; the wine is medium-bodied with a long, linear mouth feel. Fine tannin focuses the wine and perfectly tempers the expressive the fruit. Here's a wine that will be very long lived; this can be kept 15+ years but is also delicious now. Classy, delicious, complete - Penfolds' signature luxury styling at a very reasonable price.
    Drink from 2017 to 2037
  • Christina Stanley
    By: Christina Stanley
    11/3/2017
    K&L Staff Member
    Your holiday wine is here! Penfold's "Bin 389," or "Baby Grange" is a nearly even blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Shiraz from Coonawarra and Barossa, aged in ex Grange barrels that add depth, heft and weight to the texture. 389 has heady aromas of dill, rich leather, roasted habanero peppers, bright menthol and spearmint, grilled plum and violets, with an expansive, condensed palate laden with cassis and tart cranberry, finished with a persistent tannin that will break down the richest ribeye.
  • Andrew Stevens
    By: Andrew Stevens
    11/3/2017
    K&L Staff Member
    Penfolds is a name familiar to many and enjoys a well deserved reputation. The 2015 Bin 389 should add another feather to an already full cap featuring Cab from the Connemara and Shiraz from Barossa in a full bodied ripe red blend that can be enjoyed now until one no longer drinks wine. Menthol and eucalyptus from the cab meet some earthy gamy notes from the shiraz. What is remarkable here is the balance of rich fruit, acid, and structure that manage to all harmonize. A perfect compliment to any lamb and mint dish or any upcoming holiday dinner for the next couple of decades.
  • David Driscoll
    By: David Driscoll
    11/2/2017
    K&L Staff Member
    On the surface, the Penfold's Bin 389 is everything it's described to be: a ripe mouthful of South Aussie Shiraz with the structure and dark-fruited density of Cabernet. It's a well-blended and beautifully-balanced bottle of red wine, pure and simple. When you dig deeper, however, and you learn that Penfolds ages the 389 in ex-Grange barrels for one year; as you can imagine they're not using cheap cooperage for their $700 bottles of Grange. Only the best barrels are used for the Grange and those same barrels are used to mature the 389 once the Grange has been emptied, hence the name "Baby Grange." I found the wine to be utterly spellbinding, a combination of easily approachable, fleshy red fruits with serious depth and complexity underneath: notes of eucalyptus and brush with dusty tannins. I've been lucky enough to drink a few bottles of Grange in my life, but for my money I'd rather have a case of the 389. It's luxury within reach.

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