The classic Bin 28 Kalimna Shiraz, first vintaged in 1959, was originally a single vineyard wine. During the early 1960s it quickly established a strong reputation as an "authentic Barossa type red" which would develop "additional character" with further cellaring. Bin 28 has very clear ripe fruit definition, with plenty of fruit volume, ripe tannin structure and underlying savoury nuances. In exceptional vintages it can age for decades. The fruit is nowadays sourced from the Barossa Valley, McLaren Vale, Clare Valley, Langhorne Creek and Padthaway. Penfolds winemaking philosophy, incorporates a very strict level of fruit selection and barrel fermentation in seasoned American oak.
Deep crimson. Intense elderberry blackberry, cranberry aromas with red liquorice/ aniseed notes. Elemental, vigorous and juicy with fresh persistent elderberry, blackberry fruits, plentiful brambly/al-dente textures, attractive mid-volume, and fresh long acidity. Finishes chewy firm with dark chocolate chinotto/ dark berry fruits. Needs some time for the elements to fold into each other. Seal; cork Drink 2022-2032 14.5% alc
93+ points (July 2021)
Bring in the barrels. It’s a beautifully integrated, svelte, bold, satisfying red wine with smoky vanillin characters sitting front and centre both on the nose and in the mouth. This is fresh and modern on the one hand but it’s also an old school fruit-and-oak shake on the other. A lot of people are going to love this release and in the right mood, in the right temperature, with evening having just come on at the end of a long winter’s walk, I’d be with them. Kalimna Shiraz is Penfolds’ McDreamy. In a creamy, soft, rich style, this is very well delivered.
93 points, The Wine Front (July 2021)
Deep, bright red/purple colour, leaving residue in the glass. Multi-faceted blackberry, smoky graphite, iodine and discreet spice aromas with background licorice and a very full-bodied palate, which is firm and gripping. The tannins are assertive and strength-giving, contributing to a very long and authoritative aftertaste. Penetrating and satisfying. A top-level shiraz. (McLaren Vale, Barossa, Padthaway, Wrattonbully)
94 points, The Real Review (June 2021)
McLaren Vale, Barossa Valley, Padthaway, Wrattonbully fruit. Matured 12 months in seasoned American oak hogsheads. Classic Bin 28. Layers of black fruits, well supported by American oak and nuanced with a hint of smoked charcuterie. Fine-grained tannins support a finish of good length. A good Bin 28, to be sure, though it lacks the brightness, precision and refinement that has characterised the elevation of the labels that surround it in the Penfolds portfolio.
93 points, Wine Companion (July 2021)
The 2019 Bin 28 Kalimna Shiraz blends fruit from McLaren Vale, Barossa Valley, Padthaway and Wrattonbully and puts it into used American oak hogsheads for a year prior to bottling. Scents of vanilla jump out on the nose but quickly recede under a wave of gently caramelized plums and cherries. Full-bodied and supple on the palate, it's concentrated and lush, with a rich, velvety finish. Once again, it's a fine value in South Australian Shiraz, and exported to the U.S. in reasonable quantities (9,054 cases).
92 points, Wine Advocate (July 2021)
Clearly defining what many customers expect from a conventional Australian Shiraz, this has sunny, fresh and vibrant fruit aromas and flavours swirling in the glass: big blackberry in an embrace with satsuma plum. Generous in body without being flabby, the disciplined oak and tannin regime pulls the belly taut to ensure the palate finishes clean and lean. Say yes to another glass – especially as it offers very good value.
94 points, David Sly, Decanter (June 2021)
Full bottle 1,415 g. Seems to have shed its 'Kalimna' in the name. Fruit from McLaren Vale, Barossa Valley, Padthaway and Wrattonbully. Aged for 12 months in seasoned American oak hogsheads.
Very deep purple. Very youthful and introvert. Extremely savoury rather than sweet and with admirable freshness. Penfolds seem to be following the trend to freshness on the basis of this wine! Super-smooth tannins. Not that persistent but offering lots of herby intensity even at this early stage.
16.5 points, JancisRobinson.com (July 2021)
Deep, bright-rimmed ruby. Smoke-tinged cherry liqueur, cassis and licorice scents, along with hints of cured tobacco and mocha. Gently sweet and lush on the palate, offering concentrated dark fruit, floral pastille and roasted coffee flavors that are sharpened by a peppery nuance. The long, supple finish echoes the dark berry note and is framed by velvety, even tannins. Made in all used American oak.
93 points, Vinous (July 2021)
Once known as Kalimna shiraz, the word Kalimna no longer can be seen on the label.It is a fully-fledged multi-regional blend these days: McLaren Vale, Barossa Valley, Padthaway, Wrattonbully. Despite the name change, the flavour rings true to past releases.
The dense red carries that sweet Aussie fruit imprint. American oak coconut ice – a defining feature – and black-fruited generosity arrive by the barrow-full. It’s bold and richly textured, which is just how Bin 28 drinkers like it. The style has been perfected since it was first made in 1959. No surprises here. Blackberry, cassis, pastille, coconut ice confection, black olives, licorice strap and spice. All up front and in your face a little, it’s warm-climate sourced and proud. No doubt about it. The 14.5% alcohol is equally warming and vocal. Earth, leather, pan forte bring a touch of savouriness and dried fruit intensity while blackberry, bitter chocolate and loaded spice do the rest as the wine rolls over the tongue. Tannins are pliable, rolling with the fruit and alcohol.
93 points, Wine Pilot
Originally, this wine came from fruit from the famous Kalimna vineyard, purchased by Penfold’s in 1945. The first vintage was 1959. These days, it is multi-vineyard and indeed, multi-regional – McLaren Vale, Barossa, Wrattonbully and Padthaway. A year in mature American oak hogsheads. Opaque colour, deep purple. At this early stage, this wine seems tighter and more closed than the 128. Black fruits, deeper and more concentrated, more chunky. Some soy sauce notes, truffles, warm earth. Good concentration. A wine looking for a big steak to match it, but be in no hurry – this has ten to fifteen years ahead. Good acidity and length. Real power, firm tannins. Really needs time in the cellar. Curiously, the longer it spent in glass, the more it seemed to go back into its shell. Time needed.
92 points, Wine Pilot
South Australia is the driest state on the world’s driest continent. Covering almost 1 million (984 377km) square kilomteres, it represents 12.8% of the Australian land mass. Sweeping plains are intersected by a spine of relatively low lying ranges, the Mount Lofty/Flinders Ranges which extend through the heart of the State. Over 50% of the state is elevated at under 150 metres. The Great Artesian basin covers almost one-third of the State. The major river is the River Murray which lethargically makes its way into the Southern Ocean. This water mass has a moderating effect on climate, particularly in the southern regions of South Australia where most vines are planted.
Summers are generally hot and dry with relatively mild nights. Winters are cool. Rainfall occurs mostly during late autumn/winter (May, June, July, August). Drought and salinity are major concerns.
The principle wine regions in South Australia are; the Adelaide Hills, Barossa (comprising the Barossa and Eden Valleys), Clare Valley, Langhorne Creek, McLaren Vale, Padthaway, Coonawarra and the Riverland. Vineyard expansion has also extended to Wrattonbully, Mount Benson, Bordertown, Robe, Southern Fleurieu and the Flinders Ranges.
It is a tradition for many wine companies to make multi-district blends from South Australian fruit – the idea of house style taking precedence over regional definition. Penfolds pioneered this concept. The vagaries of vintage variation can be evened out by fruit selection, ensuring quality at a high level. However there is debate that this concept comes at the expense of the ‘soul’ of the wine. Penfolds Grange is probably the most famous multi-district blend and is an excellent counter-argument.Andrew Caillard MW, Langton's
Penfolds is probably the most extraordinary of the world’s wine brands with an enviable reputation for quality at every price level. The original Penfold was an English doctor who, in 1844, planted grapes at Magill, now a suburb of Adelaide. However, it was not until the late 1940s that Penfolds began to forge a reputation for red wine.
The Penfolds house style emerged from a fortified wine producing culture and evolved as a winemaking philosophy which has had a profound effect on the entire Australian wine industry. Many of the techniques initially adopted to make Penfolds Grange would become part of the wider Penfolds winemaking culture. The number of techniques employed in the research and development of Penfolds wines is astonishing. Max Schubert and his team pioneered: major advances in yeast technology and paper chromatography; the understanding and use of pH in controlling bacterial spoilage; the use of headed down/submerged cap fermentation and the technique of rack and return; cold fermentation practices; the use of American oak as a maturation vessel and perhaps most critically, partial barrel fermentation. Nowadays, the use of American oak and barrel fermentation for instance is considered traditional Barossa winemaking practice!
Today, Penfolds house style embraces the concept of multi-regional blending, optimum fruit quality, the use of fine-grained American or French oak, barrel fermentation and maturation. Overall, the Penfolds style is about highly-defined fruit aromas, fruit sweetness, ripe tannins, richness, power and concentration. The number of iconic wines that have emerged from the Penfolds stable over the years is remarkable. Bin 389 a Cabernet Shiraz blend released in 1960 is now considered the quintessential Australian wine blend. Bin 128 Coonawarra Shiraz and Bin 28 Kalimna Shiraz released in 1962 pre-empted the contemporary enthusiasm for regional definition by about 25 years. Improved vineyard management, site selection and winemaking brought about subsequent releases of Bin 707 and Bin 407 Cabernet Sauvignon. The Penfolds Wine Making Philosophy is the accumulation of more than half-a-century of knowledge and winemaking practice initiated by Max Schubert and subsequently refined by Don Ditter, John Duval and Peter Gago. Their collective commitment to multi-regional and vineyard blending contributed to a consistency of style and quality that has cemented Penfolds reputation as the foremost producer of premium age-worthy red wines in Australia.