Family owned, Leeuwin Estate, one of the five founding wineries of the now famous Margaret River district of Western Australia, is under the direction of two generations who work with a team of highly skilled winemakers to consistently produce wines ranking alongside the world’s finest. In 1972, legendary Napa Valley winemaker, Robert Mondavi, identified the future site of the Leeuwin vineyard as being ideal for the production of premium wine and provided early mentorship to Denis and Tricia Horgan in the transformation of their cattle farm into Leeuwin Estate. Enjoying its first commercial vintage in 1979, Leeuwin was thrust into the international spotlight when Decanter Magazine gave its highest recommendation to the 1981 “Art Series” Chardonnay. The international accolades have continued and Leeuwin now exports to 30 markets. Celebrating the combination of fine wine, food, art and music, Leeuwin features an award winning restaurant, cellardoor and art gallery. The Estate is renowned for staging spectacular events and welcoming visitors from around the world.
The “Art Series” represents Leeuwin’s most opulent and age-worthy wines and are identified with paintings commissioned from leading contemporary Australian Artists. Leeuwin’s Art Series Chardonnay and Art Series Cabernet Sauvignon are included in wine auction house, Langton’s prestigious classification. With point scores as high as 98/100, the Wine Spectator has included Leeuwin Art Series Chardonnays in the editor’s annual Top 100 Wines of the Year list on numerous occasions with the 2011 vintage ranked wine #5 in 2014, 2015 ranked #38 (95 points), 2016 ranked #28 (96 points). The 2017 is just arriving now and won’t be ranked until year end, but once again it has garnered another 96 point rating.
The 100% Chardonnay 2017 Artist Series label is by John Young, Cellaring potential is 15 years. 13.5% Alcohol.
One of the tasting highlights when we visited the winery in Margaret River in January 2019 was a selection of library and current vintages of the legendary Art Series Chardonnay ….. we’ve been waiting patiently. Curiously, this wine is significantly more expensive at retail in Australia than here in the USA. A great joy to drink while young when paired with salmon or halibut crudo, or scallops….and with some age just bring on the lobster with butter sauce, or roast pheasant with baked apples! See Wine Spectator review below from November 2020. Should be $90 a bottle….NOW $87.95 a bottle. OR 4+/$82.95
“Opens rich and lush, with grilled pineapple, ripe pear and fleshy apricot flavors. Details of mineral, lime peel and Meyer lemon add a fresh thread of acidity and a sense of precision, finishing with a note of sesame seed. Drink now through 2030. 800 cases imported.” – 96 points, Wine Spectator — MW
“Such complexity and resolve make for a very attractive nose with peaches, grapefruit, cedary oak spice, gunflint and wet stones. The palate has a plush, smoothly resolved texture with a rich, creamy texture and all-encompassing, ripe stone-fruit flavors, ahead of a very long, smooth finish. Grilled-hazelnut and apricot-kernel flavors to close.” – 96 points, James Suckling.com
“This achieves another step up the quality ladder for Leeuwin Estate, seemingly impossible. There’s been no change in the vinification, nor in the vineyard. The change is an increase in the intensity of the flavours, and hence their length and aftertaste. It’s an extraordinary wine, among the greatest of Burgundy (and elsewhere in the world). Whatever you expect from its future development will be delivered. – ”99 pts/#1 Best Chardonnay – Halliday Wine Companion