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Penfolds Quantum Bin 98 is the continuation of a twenty-year endeavor from when Australian vine cuttings were planted in Californian soil. A Wine of the World that encapsulates a bold blending alliance, Quantum reveals a wine that shows wisdom, crafted with conviction but also embedded in the “quality-first” philosophy that underpins Penfolds flagships. The wine serves as the most powerful expression of our blending style and leads the charge in Penfolds ambition to seek out parcels of intense flavor, structural tannins and equal parts grace and complexity. Northern and southern hemispheres bring prized cabernet sauvignon from Napa Valley and pedigreed shiraz from South Australia, respectively, into each other’s realm. Not adhering to expectations and de rigueur.
What sticks with you about this global blend of Napa and Southern Australian wine is the intense and transparent purple and blue fruit. Lots of blackberry and blueberry aromas with some stones and flowers, such as violets. It’s a very layered and intense wine with very refined, creamy and chewy tannins. Full and very impressive. Very Penfolds. Mouth-filling texture. It’s made mostly from Napa grapes and predominantly from Oakville and Diamond Mountain. About one-fifth is from South Australia. Aged in 80% new American oak and 20% new French.
The flagship wine in this range, the 2018 Cabernet Sauvignon Quantum Bin 98 is 87% Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon and 13% South Australia Shiraz. Blackberry jam, bittersweet chocolate, espresso, licorice, cloves and gravel infuse the 2018 with tons of character and complexity. Dense and opulent to the core, the Bin 98 possesses tremendous intensity. I would give if a few years in bottle to fully come together.
The first release of this new iconoclastic label, the 2018 Quantum Bin 98 is labeled as a 'Wine of the World,' although the AVA is the United States and technically 87% is American wine (Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa Valley), while 13% is Australian ('Grade A1' Shiraz from South Australia). The wine spent 16 months in oak, 100% new, 80% American oak and 20% French. In fact, the wine is made very much like Grange, in that it completes fermentation in new, mainly American oak barrels.
The inaugural release of this red combines 87% Cabernet Sauvignon with 13% Shiraz, using grapes from both Napa Valley and South Australia. Dark and brooding, it delivers a smooth, textured palate of bright red fruit and supple, integrated tannins, with meaty undertones along a continuum of black pepper, graphite and leather.