The €œArt Series € represents Leeuwin's most opulent & ageworthy wines from each vintage. The Art Series Shiraz labels exclusively feature the artworks of Australia's Aboriginal artists, including artworks from a number of Aboriginal artists based in the remote and spectacular Western Australia Kimberley region.
Variety - 94% Shiraz; 5% Malbec; 1% Viognier.
Cellaring Potential -12 - 15 years.
The Year - Pruning was completed in the middle of a very wet and windy September, rainfall was above average. Springs that had been inactive in the landscape for many years were again flowing freely. Dams filled and the Boodjidup Brook flowed strongly. Weather improved with October and November, but bouts of wind and rain continued between periods of fine and sunny weather. Veraison was noted in the Chardonnay in the first week of January, and several weeks later in the Cabernet. Cabernet Sauvignon and Shiraz harvest began in the last week of March and on into middle of April depending on the site. January was warm, with slightly above average daytime temperatures; February in contrast had slightly cooler than average daytime temperatures; then March slightly warmer again but with cooler nights. A fabulous vintage with excellent weather conditions for developing and maintaining the delicate flavours of the white fruit. April developed a distinctly autumnal feel with warm days and cool nights producing physiologically ripe skin and seed tannins in the reds. The cooling influence of the sea breeze was significant this year, most days through summer the southerly breeze from the Southern Ocean was obvious in the early afternoon. Marri trees (Corymbia calophylla) flowered heavily again this year and bird pressure was low through February and March.
Vinification - Fruit was fermented in both open and closed fermenters with 20% being whole bunches to enhance vibrancy and lift. Ferment vessels were plunged and pumped over daily and the wine run to new, one and two year old barrels for malolactic fermentation. The wine underwent malolactic in barrels and after six months the various components were blended and matured in barrels for a further twelve months. After assemblage the wine was fined and readied for bottling.
Alc/vol - 13.7%
'Part hand-picked for whole bunches, part Selectiv machine-harvested for whole berries, matured in French oak (50% new) for 18 months. A wine that combines grace and power; fruit complexity with varietal expression and savoury tannins. Blackberry and plum fruits are the mainstays of the layered flavours, the darker notes worthy of the northern Rhone Valley.'
96 Points - James Halliday
'Deep, youthful red/purple colour and a dusty, char-oak led bouquet, the palate full-bodied and quite tannic, deep and layered with lasting power and grip. Superb flavour and balance, texture and charm. This has the structure to take some age well.'
94 Points - Huon Hooke
'Lots of blackberry, blueberry and crush white pepper aromas that follow through to a beautiful palate of quartz, mineral and Indian spice. Full body. Tangy and bright acidity. Intense fruit. Yet always reserved.'
94 Points - James Suckling
'Love the way this variety has really come into its own at Leeuwin. This is a more medium-bodied expression showing impeccable balance and integration. Silky smooth tannins and fine-grained oak with a savoury fruit character. Totally seamless palate is superb.'
94 Points - Ray Jordan
'Perfumed and spicy, mixed berries and grilled meat. Medium bodied, attractive firm tannin, succulence of fruit laden with spice, gently sappy, with a savoury finish of fine length. Very nicely done.'
93 Points - Gary Walsh