2011 Leeuwin "Art Series" Cabernet Sauvignon Margaret River Western Australia (Elsewhere $50)

SKU #1246370 95 points James Suckling

 This is really a gorgeous bottle with subtle black currant, berry, spice, chocolate and cedar undertones. Full body, integrated tannins and a long and beautiful finish. So perfect now. Better in 2016. But why wait?

94 points James Halliday

 Makes a fist at effortlessness. Supple blackcurrant and choc flavours glide into bay leaf and clove. Mid-weight but juicy. Builds a good amount of momentum as it rolls through the mouth. Shape, mouthfeel and length. Elegance is its middle name. Should mature well.  (12/2014)

93 points Vinous

 Inky ruby. Powerful smoke- and spice-accented aromas of ripe dark fruits, cured tobacco, vanilla and cedary oak, all lifted by a suave floral topnote. Stains the palate with concentrated cassis and cherry-vanilla flavors, with zesty acidity and a strong suggestion of peppery spices giving the wine lift. At once rich and lithe, this Cabernet finishes with strong thrust, a touch of smoky minerality and harmonious shaping tannins. (JR)  (3/2016)

91 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 Deep garnet-purple in color, the 2011 Cabernet Sauvignon Art Series has a fragrant nose of crushed blackcurrants, blackberries and dried Provence herbs with hints of black pepper, cedar, menthol and undergrowth. Medium-bodied, it has a great core of muscular, youthful fruit with grainy, approachable tannins and a refreshing herbal lift to the finish.

Jancis Robinson

 Lovely cassis character, really fresh and tight and bright, fine tannins and a red-fruit sweetness on the palate and just a slight leafy note. Bright and zesty but with a ripeness that gives a rounded, luscious character. (17+/20 points)  (1/2014)

K&L Notes

Whilst some parts of Australia had a troublesome vintage in 2011 (one of the coolest and wettest on record for South Australia / Victoria) the region of Margaret River, on the south western edge of this vast continent enjoyed yet another stellar year, with some folks even celebrating it as a potential classic! If this cracker from Leeuwin Estate is anything to go by I'd say they aren't wrong; this is quintessential Margaret River Cabernet showing exactly why this is THE ultra premium region for world class Bordeaux varietals in Australia if not the entire southern hemisphere. This iconic estate sits on a prime piece of land originally identified by none other than Napa valley's own Robert Mondavi as a place with great potential for growing Cabernet! (Ryan Woodhouse - K&L Aussie Wine buyer) Winemaker's Notes: "The 'Art Series' represents Leeuwin’s most opulent & ageworthy wines from each vintage. The 2011 Art Series Cabernet shows a concentrated dark fruit spectrum with an abundance of ripe blackcurrants, cherries and a hint of cassis. Coffee bean, dark chocolate and black olives lie beneath. Subtle dustiness combines with a seductive violet lift, enhancing the varietal fragrance and increasing complexity. A dense and layered palate with incredible texture. The generosity of the palate is carefully laced with a fine and structural acid line. Dark cherries and currants weave through smokey and mocha notes, finishing with long tactile tannins."

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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 wine regions are in the southeastern area of the continent, including Barossa Valley, Clare Valley, McLaren Vale, and Coonawarra in South Australia; Yarra Yarra Valley 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 and Sauvignon Blanc from the land Down Under, where Riesling also enjoys international acclaim. 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. View a list of bestselling items from Australia.
Sub-Region:

Western Australia

Specific Appellation:

Margaret River