2003 Leeuwin Estate "Prelude" Cabernet Sauvignon-Merlot Margaret River Western Australia (Elsewhere $29)

SKU #1064281

90 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar, Jul/Aug 07: "Bright red. Peppery, herb-accented cherry and redcurrant aromas strongly suggest Bordeaux; this doesn't smell like it's from a superripe vintage. Taut, light red berry and plum flavors are nicely focused and zesty, with fine-grained tannins adding structure. Finishes bright and crisp, with very good persistence and a lingering note of cherry pit. Nice balance here."

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Price: $14.99

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By: John Majeski |  K&L Staff Member  |  Review Date: 2/25/2011  | Send Email
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Jim Chanteloup (or 'Chanty' as we affectionately call him), our clever, savvy, experienced Commonwealth wine buyer, frequently hits one out of the park (ok, I know, our SF store is not far from the 2010 World Champion Giants homeplate). Batting averages aside, this is a serious Bordeaux-style blend from one of the most heralded boutique wine estates in Western Australia, hitting all the right component notes— subtle aromatics, suave, well-delineated round fruit, and restrained tannins. Given almost a decade to mature gracefully in bottle, this classic Cabernet-Merlot is priced ridiculously low and ready to go with a warm winter stew of beef, root vegetables and scallions.
Top Value!

Additional Information:

Varietal:

Cabernet Sauvignon and Blends

- Cabernet Sauvignon has come a long way from its role as a blending varietal, however dominant, in the wines of Bordeaux. Today it is the most planted red varietal in the world. Identified as a descendent of Cabernet Franc and Sauvignon Blanc, the late-ripening Cabernet Sauvignon needs to be planted in warmer climates to fully ripen. Its small berries can easily be identified for their distinctive blue color, thick skins and high tannins. And while the varietal has its own definitive characteristics: green pepper-like aromas and black currant flavors among them, it is perhaps most prized for its ability to convey terroir, vintage and winemaking. A relatively new varietal, Cabernet Sauvignon started making inroads into the wines of the Médoc and Graves in the late-18th century. Today it is also dominant in the up-and-coming Entre-Deux-Mers region of Bordeaux and can also be found in Southwest France. It is the companion varietal to Sangiovese in Italy's Super Tuscans and is planted all over Europe, stretching to lesser-known winegrowing regions like Russia and Lebanon. In the Americas Cabernet Sauvignon has found champions in every nook and cranny of California and among winemakers in Washington, where it complements plantings of Merlot. In South America, Cab thrives in Chile, but can also be found in smaller amounts in Argentina and even in Mexico.
Country:

Australia

- While it is true that the greatest strides in Australian winemaking have come in the last 30 years or so, commercial viticulture began as early as the 1820s and has developed uninterrupted ever since. The majority of the great Region are in the southeastern area of the continent, with the Barossa Valley, Claire Valley, McLaren Vale, and Coonawarra in South Australia, the Yarra Yarra Velley and Pyrenees in Victoria and the Upper and Lower Hunter Valleys in New South Wales. Many of the wines from Southeastern Australia are based on Shiraz or Cabernet Sauvignon and various blends including Grenache and Mourvedre. In Western Australia, along the Margaret River, great strides are being made with Pinot Noir as well as Bordeaux-styled reds. There are also many world-class releases of Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc and Riesling from the land Down Under. While many equate Aussie wines with "value", there are more than a few extremely rare and pricey options, which never fail to earn the highest ratings from wine publications and critics throughout the world. Click for a list of bestselling items from Australia.
Sub-Region:

Western Australia

Specific Appellation:

Margaret River