Penfolds 2015 Collection
Dapper Chapper had the pleasure of attending the launch of famed Australian winemaker Penfolds Collection 2015 in the beautiful surroundings of Somerset House recently, and it was superb.
The venue was an inspired choice, the vaults underneath Somerset House were reminiscent of an elegant cellar, and their entire collection were available to taste in the first part of the evening. Enthusiasts moved around each pillar tasting and discovering more about each of the wines from the well-informed experts at each station. From Riesling to Chardonnay, Shiraz to Cabernet Sauvignon, there was a wine for everyone.
With the announcement of their partnership with the Royal Opera House, it allowed us the pleasure of some intimate performances throughout the evening. You will soon see Penfolds’ full range in all Royal Opera House bars and restaurants, as well as some special master classes this year.
Alex Beard, chief executive of the Royal Opera House, said this: “We are delighted to be announcing our new collaboration with Penfolds. We have a rich history and heritage, yet we are always striving to innovate and develop our art forms. The work on our stages is renowned for world-class excellence and our backstage skills and crafts show mastery at the very highest levels.”
Introducing the newest Grange, chief winemaker Peter Gago said “The story of Grange is now one of almost mythical status, but the winemaking philosophy behind it remains faithful to that established by Max in 1951. Whilst we continue to endeavour to take the wines to the next level via vineyard improvement and winemaking refinement, Max’s blueprint is indelibly stamped and respected.”
We were then treated to a preview of The Story of Grange, a short film directed by Nic Benns, narrated by Russell Crowe and with an original score by David Hirschfelder that tells the story of Max Schubert’s creation of the unique Grange blend.
We were led upstairs to a beautifully laid table filled with flowers stretching the length of the hall and treated to course after course of delicious food perfectly matched with Penfolds best. Particularly standing out was the rare rump with ox cheek dumpling, and the elegantly served sugar-cured egg yolk in a chocolate shell, served smoking under a glass cloche.
Between courses the Royal Opera House gave moving performances from Schubert, Mozart and more under themes such as Identity, Love and Obsession. The pieces by Kiandra Howarth, Grant Doyle, Christopher Vanderspar and Catriona Beveridge were powerfully and professionally performed to an enraptured room.
All in all it was a beautiful evening, with Penfolds standing out for its elegant and tasteful choices that were only matched by the quality of the wine served.