The Bigness: Penfolds – Bin 28 Kalimna Shiraz 2012

From time to time, I like to “taste outside of my box” which means searching out a bottle of something that isn’t a red Grenache or Carignan. I don’t always do so well in this, but I popped across this bottle of Penfolds the other day and thought, “Why not?” and that’s because if I drink Syrah, it’s usually from somewhere in Catalonia or Southern France. These two regions make a lovely expression of the grape and honestly, living in California, I got a touch tired of all the explosive versions of it from the Central Valley or what was then imported from Australia.

Much has changed in recent years. For instance, Eastern Washington, especially in the Horse Heaven Hills, producers Syrah that rivals a great deal of what comes out of France and Australia has evolved as well with more than just the “Shiraaaaz” on offer these days from say the Mornington Peninsula. But, I digress as this is a Penfolds and in this case, it is very much Shiraz from the Barossa Valley.

I had to work on this bottle over a couple of days as honestly, I’m just not that accustomed to such a massive wine anymore despite the fact I guzzle Grenache like it’s going out of style. Despite this, there’s a lot to like about this wine. The fully-ripe fruit isn’t just syrup and there’s a good deal of depth to it that, given time will level off and allow one to find a more rounded wine, if one were willing to wait.

Bin 28 Kalimna Shiraz 2012
Dark and inky in the glass with a big burst of prune, fig, blackberry, jammy and cooked fruit, light oak toast and a little menthol. Much the same in the body but with a wallop of flavor intensity that could do with sitting in a quiet corner for some time to chill out and evolve.

100% Syrah 14.5% 25€