Penfolds and Champagne Thiénot’s Champagne collaboration

13 May, 2019 by Andy Young

Penfolds has revealed the details of a collaboration it has undertaken with Champagne House Thiénot, which has seen the creation of three new Champagnes to celebrate Penfolds’ 175th anniversary.

Three Champagnes, from the 2012 vintage, have been created: a Chardonnay Pinot Noir Cuvée, and two single vineyard wines – a Blanc de Blancs and a Blanc de Noirs, with Penfolds saying this marks the start of a wonderful French and Australian wine alliance.

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Thiénot Managing Director, Stanislas Thiénot said: “This is a first for us, I am proud to say this has also been a truly collaborative experience from the very beginning. We have created blends reflective of both Thiénot and Penfolds wine styles and philosophies. We are very happy with the results, the Champagnes are modern reflections showcasing fruit, freshness, and finesse.

“This is the result of an unexpected encounter between two major wine regions, one belonging to the old world and the other to the new world, but with one single common goal: to produce great Champagnes. In addition, working with Peter Gago is extremely interesting and rewarding both for his immense experience and for his innovative vision.”

Gago, the Chief Winemaker with Penfolda, worked with Thiénot chef de cave Nicolas Uriel to create the Champagnes and Gago said he was focused on ensuring the Penfolds house style and blending philosophies aligned with those of Champagne Thiénot and their winemaking approach. Liqueur d’expédition housed in Yattarna barriques from Australia added greater symbolism and connection.

“This is Step One of an inviting and compelling journey, Gago said.

“Some time back, we announced our intent to make a Champagne. We are now revealing a partnership with our friends at Thiénot – one which would not have been imaginable a decade or two ago.

“To now actually work alongside a Champagne House and ultimately craft Champagnes proudly, which co-bears the globally recognised red stamp of Penfolds, is both wonderful and a first collaboration of its kind for an Australian winery.”

He added: “Whilst the singularly expressive and acutely defined siblings, 2012 Blanc de Blancs and 2012 Blanc de Noirs, play their role in this trio’s inaugural release, this first release – the 2012 Chardonnay Pinot Noir Cuvée – synergistically creates its own stage, commanding its own space. What is so obvious from the first sip and sniff – time will be kind to this wine. A revelational journey awaits.”

The first of the Champagne releases, 2012 Champagne Thiénot x Penfolds Chardonnay Pinot Noir Cuvée will be available from June 2019. RRP $280.00 AUD for 750ml bottle. Limited large formats (1.5L and 3L) are available in select countries around the world. The 2012 Champagne Thiénot x Penfolds Blanc de Blancs (Avize Grand Cru) and 2012 Champagne Thiénot x Penfolds Blanc de Noirs (Aÿ Grand Cru) will be released in 2020.

The Champagnes will be available in Australia via Penfolds.com, Penfolds Cellar Doors, Duty Free and select Fine Wine Retailers.