Careful viticultural management practices in the growing season ensure that the winemakers receive fruit with elegance and finesse, with its natural acidity intact. Careful winemaking techniques are then employed to ensure that the resulting wine maintains the elegance and finesse from the vineyard, adding further complexity with lees stirring and oak maturation, which also provide balance and increased mouthfeel.
Rawson’s Retreat Chardonnay is made from carefully selected fruit grown across southeast Australia. It displays the expected Australian chardonnay characteristics of rockmelon and peach flavours, balanced with some pithy grapefruit notes, balancing the final wine perfectly. This wine has an uncommon level of complexity for an offering at this price point and is ideally matched to poultry dishes or seafood with a buttery sauce.
|Chicken caesar salad
Chicken & thyme sausages
|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.