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Penfolds launches first-ever multi-vintage Yattarna in Paris

Published:  17 February, 2023

Penfolds officially unveiled its first-ever multi-vintage Chardonnay in Paris this week during a reception hosted by chief winemaker, Peter Gago. The wine is a blend of five Yattarna vintages and aptly named the Penfolds V. 

Gago was accompanied by Stanislas Thiénot, MD Champagne Thiénot, at the reception. Together, the pair also unveiled the latest vintage releases from their collaboration; 2013 Avize Blanc de Blancs & 2013 Aÿ Blanc de Noirs (Grand Cru) Champagnes.

Blended by Gago and Penfolds white winemaker Kym Schroeter the Penfolds V, which spans 2011, 2012, 2014, 2016 and 2021 vintages, has divided critics.

After tasting Penfolds V for the first time, Erin Larkin of Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate wrote, “This is a monumental wine. A 360-degree view of Chardonnay. Truly kaleidoscopic.” (99 points).  

However, wine critic Matthew Jukes was less impressed when he tried the Penfolds V two months after bottling last year: “There is a seashell theme here with classical almondy Yattarna hallmarks, yet I can sense the joins in this wine, like five distinct train carriages linked with rather obvious couplings," he said in his 18/20 verdict.

By comparison, the Penfolds G5, the last in the Australian winery’s experimental series of blending separate vintages of Grange, its flagship red, was a roaring success.

The once-in-a-lifetime red for collectors was awarded a perfect 100 Points by James Suckling, Nick Stock, Andrew Caillard MW and Ken Gargett, plus World of Fine Wine magazine, and a perfect 20++/20 points by Matthew Jukes.

Like the G5, Only 2,220 bottles of Penfolds V (RRP $875.00 AUD /75cl) will be available worldwide following its release in April 2023. Given the limited quantity, it remains to be seen if the Penfolds V is a marketing ploy riding the coattails of the exceptional G5 or a wine of outstanding quality for serious collectors.

Meanwhile, the partnership between Penfolds and Champagne Thiénot was first announced in 2019, the year of Penfolds' 175th anniversary. Since then, the Houses have released four Champagnes, including the inaugural 2012 Chardonnay Pinot Noir Cuveé, two Grand Cru Champagnes (2012 Avize Blanc de Blancs and 2012 Aÿ Blanc de Noirs) and a Champagne Brut Rosé NV later in 2021.

Penfolds and Champagne Thiénot have continued its Franco-Australian wine collaboration with the release of two new Champagnes from the 2013 vintage:

· 2013 Champagne Thiénot x Penfolds Avize Blanc de Blancs

· 2013 Champagne Thiénot x Penfolds Aÿ Blanc de Noirs

Gago said: “In 2019 we released our first 2012 champagnes in Paris at The Ritz in the Place Vendôme. In 2023, we’re proudly back in Paris releasing our 2013’s at Hôtel de Crillon in Place de la Concorde. Geographically, professionally and emotionally, we’re just so pleased to be working with Thiénot – how lucky are we?”

Champagne Thiénot MD, Stanislas Thiénot added: “Collaborating with Peter Gago and the team at Penfolds continues to be a wonderful and rewarding experience for all of us at Thiénot. We are so proud of these two beautifully expressive wines from the 2013 vintage, blended to incorporate both Thiénot and Penfolds wine styles and philosophies, showcasing fruit, freshness, and finesse. Contemporary Champagne at its finest.”

The 2013 Champagne Thiénot x Penfolds Avize Blanc de Blancs and 2013 Champagne Thiénot x Penfolds Aÿ Blanc de Noirs will be available in select countries from early-2023.