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97-Point Cabernet for Under $40 - A Mouton Look-Alike for a Steal - 03/06/2017 - Australia

This has all the makings of one of our biggest deals of the year:

  • 97 Point Cabernet
  • A Renowned and Historic Producer
  • Pricing That's 20% Below Market and Under $40
  • Comparisons to a First Growth
Leeuwin's Art Series Cabernet is a homerun in 2012 and a wine that will challenge the immense stature of their famed Chardonnay. James Suckling got right to the point with comparisons to Mouton, a finish that "goes on for minutes," and press that's akin to the cult bottlings of Australia that often sell for hundreds. Halliday added that it is a wine of elegance and purity saying "it simply doesn't come better in this mode." Bordeaux lovers take note - this has the pedigree and proven history to age beautifully. In fact, those who love the best Cabernet has to offer from anywhere shouldn't miss this gem.

2012 Leeuwin

2012 Leeuwin "Art Series" Cabernet Sauvignon Margaret River Western Australia ($39.99)

97 points James Suckling: "This is the Mouton-Rothschild of Australia - with a screw cap! Incredibly complex aromas of blackcurrants, spices, cigar box, and berries. Full body, a fantastic palate and polished tannins. Goes for minutes. Better in 2017." (03/2016)

96 points James Halliday: "The headline, the main text and the footnotes all say one thing and one thing only: purity. And I suppose I should add elegance. They simply don't come better in this mode." (10/2016)

K&L Notes: Winemaker's Notes: "Dark ruby red with a black core. Vibrant and concentrated fruit aroma of abundant blackcurrant, dark cherries and mulberry. Beneath the lifted aromatics of anise, cocoa, clove, black olive and earthy wild field mushroom provide elegant layers to a highly expressive and complex nose. Structure and fruit weight work harmoniously on the palate, characterized by a dark fruit core of blackcurrant and forest fruits. Savoury spices of dried sage, cassia bark, and tobacco gives subtle texture, and combines with diligent oak integration and a fine acid line. All components arrive to a finish featuring slightly chalky cocoa powder-like tannins. 2012 was an exceptional vintage for Margaret River Cabernet Sauvignon. Summer temperatures were above average but with very few hot days, the afternoon sea breeze always a welcome cooling influence. The weather was consistently fine, warm and sunny with little rain. A Margaret River powerhouse, the Art Series Cabernet Sauvignon is made in a long lived style due to its ample fruit and sturdy frame. Often described as 'Bordeaux like' the core of the fruit comes from 30+-year-old vines grown in well-draining gravel/granite derived soils. The Art Series range is identified with paintings commissioned from leading contemporary Australian artists."

Sharon Kelly | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: March 06, 2017

I could go on and on about this magnificent wine. For the sake of brevity I'll focus on just a few of its qualities so you can click the Add to Cart button to the right of your screen before our inventory is depleted. In the glass is an intoxicating bounty of dark fruits, tobacco, cassis, clove and a hint of eucalyptus. The first sip seduces the palate with black currant, black cherry, warm baking spices and well integrated oak. The acidity is lively, the alcohol level respectable (13.5%), the tannins present yet gentle and the finish perpetual. This wine exudes purity, elegance and finesse. Now click that button.

Ryan Woodhouse | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: March 03, 2017

My personal barometer for Margaret River Cabernet in any given vintage. This is a benchmark wine with immense pedigree and impeccable consistency. I can absolutely see why one might compare it to First Growth Bordeaux. Not just on the exceptional quality of this release, but on the merit of Leeuwin Estate's unwavering dedication to excellence year in and year out to produce authentic wines that faithfully reflect the season and magical terroir of Margaret River. I feel obliged to mention Leeuwin's entirely pragmatic choice of Stelvin closure. They believe (as do I) that this is the best and most consistent seal for the wine to effectively preserve all the hard work they put into crafting it. The silly myth about not being able to cellar wines under screwcap has been thoroughly debunked long ago and I will be enjoying this wine from my cellar for decades to come.

David Othenin-Girard | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: February 21, 2017

The majestic wines of Leeuwin are such a pleasure to consume, we often forget how special they are, whether the reason be the screw top or their limited availability. The potential of Margaret River on full display here, with incredible depth matching stupendous freshness. This is what Cabernet is all about. The wonderful deep dusty cassis fruit, the eucalyptus, the high grade fresh tobacco leaf, fancy leather imply a powerful. Perhaps the most intriguing aspect is that it achieves such depth and complexity, a full bodied experience while remaining elegant and somehow demure. Not bombastic, but a completely encompassing experience nonetheless.

Gary Westby | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: February 02, 2017

This may be the most elegant Cabernet Sauvignon in the store from outside of Bordeaux, and gives most of even them a run for their money. The Leeuwin Art Series from Margaret River has very fine currant aromatics framed by an almost pencil lead like mineral component. The wine has perfect texture, medium body and resolved, fine tannin. This would be perfect with filet mignon tonight, or keep for quite a long time in your cellar.

Gary Norton | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: February 01, 2017

Year after year I find myself increasingly impressed by the value and overall quality of this wine. Robust, age-worthy, structured - the wine has it all. It's a classically styled Aussie cab, brimming with notes of tomato leaves, dried herbs, licorice, dark fruit and spices on the finish. In the early 1970s the estate was identified by none other than Robert Mondavi (presumably as a prospective buyer) as a premier site for high quality wine production and this bottle is evidence that he was absolutely correct.