2017 Penfolds Bin 311 Chardonnay
Bin 311 Chardonnay has a cutting-edge stlye that reflects the ongoing experimetation and developmental work of Yattarna. This off shoot wine comprises declassified parcels of A1 graded chardonnay grapes and seasoned oak previously used for Yattarna. As a consequence Bin 311 has established a reputation similiar to Bin 389 and represents one of the very best value ultra-fine Australian chardonnay, creamy textures and long indelible acidity.
Fresh and inviting – complexed by yeast lees-derived nougat and ground pistachio/almond/roasted chestnut.
Scents of deconstructed crème brûlée ‘(flamed top and custard middle), enhanced by ripe white nectarine and peach fruits.
A liberal sprinkle of crushed rock/pebble dust (quartz, limestone?) certainly adds interest.
A very lively palate of freshly sliced cucumber and lime citrus flavors hovering over a soft and succulent acid underpinning.
A tight phenolic grip induces wonderful length and drive to the finish.
A cool climate regional trio – three different chardonnay expressions of texture/acidity/tightness/purity coalesce, propelling combined fruits/flavors.
A ‘new Bin 311’ is revealed. Nice.
The source regions for Bin 311 Chardonnay all enjoyed plentiful winter rainfall, with several records broken. In Tasmania, good winter rainfall continued well into spring. Tumbarumba in New South Wales was above the long-term average while the Adelaide Hills recorded the highest annual rainfall since 1992. Across all regions, the 2017 season was a return to more average conditions, following the warm, dry and early 2016 vintage. Maximum spring temperatures were low but minimum temperatures were higher than average and there was no frost.
In contrast to the high rainfall in winter and spring, the season ended dry and clear. February conditions were unusually cool and dry, and as a result the grapes showed fine acidity and elegance. Harvest was pushed back by the generally cooler conditions, which allowed grapes to slowly develop flavor intensity. A warm and dry March provided a perfect end to the season with strong quality markers across all regions.
: Adelaide Hills, Tasmania and Tumbarumba.
: Eight months in French oak (25% new).
: Alc/Vol: 12.5%, Acidity: 6.4 g/L, pH: 3.17.
“A deliberately different Bin 311 – at a stylistic crossroad. It happens – e.g. when Bin 28 in the 1960’s outgrew Kalimna.”
“No intention to ever abandon Tumbarumba … yet Tasmania and Adelaide Hills fruits also coolly beckon.”
“Add a little new oak to interlock any regional irregularity to seal the deal ➝ Bin 311 re-invention, re-birth, resurrection!”
- Peter Gago, Penfolds Chief Winemaker