Penfolds St Henri is one of Australia's greatest red wines. The Shiraz for St Henri is selected for subtlety and elegance and the finished wine has the structure complexity for extended bottle maturation. 1998 is a classic St Henri vintage that is good to drink until 2025.
The Penfolds St Henri style is a dramatic contrast to Penfolds Grange. St Henri is pure, unadorned Shiraz, virtually alone among high-quality Australian reds in that it has never relied on new oak. It was created in the mid-1950s (first commercial vintage 1957) and has gained a new lease on life in the 1990s as its quality and distinctive style became better understood. Penfolds St Henri is rich and plush when young and gains soft, earthy, mocha-like characters as it ages. Before bottling it is matured in old, 2000 litre vats that allow the wine to develop, but impart no oak character. A small proportion of Cabernet is used to improve structure, but the focal point for Penfolds St Henri is Shiraz, often comprising over 95% of the blend. Packaged in laser-etched bottles since the 1996 vintage.
A black centre with deep purple and crimson rim.
Very subtle and highly appealing, oscillating between ripe damson fruits, earthy, smoked meats and delicate, lifted perfumes. Many layers of complex aromas open out of the wine as it sits in the glass.
Concentrated and tight with dark, intense summer berry fruits forming a rich ball of flavour on the tongue and offering plenty of depth and palate length. There are fine, ripe tannins that extend into a well-structured velvety texture, with smokey, savoury influences from maturation in the large, old oak vats.
Awards & Ratings
This is a great St. Henri, but this bottle is broody and introspective on the nose, with traces of brine and seaweed suggesting that this will evolve into a very complex, more Bordeaux-like bouquet in ten years time. The palate is medium-bodied with sappy, fleshy tannins. There is good weight here, but again it is very primal and is still wondering what career to follow when it leaves school. But is has already had great exam result, so the world is its oyster.
92 points Huon Hooke
Ranked 13 of 21 Shiraz from South Australia. Very spicy wine; lots of aromas ; red fruits again, taut and leanish; fine and elegant. Taut. Long aging. Now to 25 years
Andrew Caillard MW
Deep crimson. Richly perfumed sweet cherry/plum/mulberry fruit with hints of mushroom and liquorice. Deep set concentrated palate with sweet cherry/plum/ chocolate/liquorice flavours, fine ripe tannins, and plenty of length. Tremendous fruit power.
- Silver at the 2003 San Francisco International Wine Competition
- Gold at the 2003 Indy International Wine Competition
A collector's item! We believe this wine to be wonderful - however, as with all aged wines, it comes with a 'Buyers be aware' clause, and some labels may not be perfect. If you have any queries, please just drop us an email or give us a call!
14% alc vol
|Units of Alcohol per Bottle||10.5 units|
|Allergen Information||Contains sulphites|
|Origin||Barossa Valley, Coonawarra, Eden Valley,
McLaren Vale, Padthaway