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2016 LEEUWIN ESTATE PRELUDE VINEYARDS CABERNET SAUVIGNON
WINEMAKER: Tim Lovett
REGION: Margaret River, Western Australia
VARIETALS: Cabernet Sauvignon (91%), Merlot (5%), Malbec (4%)
MATURATION: 20 months in French oak barriques
ANALYSIS: 13.5% alc/vol | 7.01 g/L TA | 3.40 pH
VINTAGE: Winter and spring rainfall was well below average. Spring was generally fine with good conditions for flowering through November. January and February temperatures were slightly above average, with only several non-concurrent hot days. A welcome, significant 90 mm of rain fell in January, setting up unirrigated vineyards for the remainder of the season. March and April temperatures were close to average; reflected in the slowing down of ripening over mid/late vintage. One of the best all round vintages seen.
WINEMAKING: After berry sorting and cold soaking, fermentation took place in closed and open fermenters and each individual lot was pumped over three times daily. Malolactic fermentation was completed in French Bordelaise coopered barriques. After nine months the separate parcels were blended and returned to oak for further maturation. Racking took place seasonally and the wine spent a total of 20 months in oak.
TASTING NOTES: Vibrant and perfumed with an abundance of dark cherries and blackcurrants, lifted notes of dried lavender, bay leaf, camphor, cumin and clove lie in sequence. Concentrated and dense, the pedigree of the fruit is evident. Layers of dark currants, cherries and Satsuma plums weave between notes of dark chocolate, coffee bean, olive and cassia. A finely laced acid structure draws all components together leading to a seamless graphite finish.
CRITICAL ACCLAIM: 92 pts Wine & Spirits
ABOUT LEEUWIN: After an extensive search in 1972 for the most suitable premium viticultural area in Australia, Robert Mondavi singled out the future site of Leeuwin Estate. Thrust into the international spotlight when their 1980 Art Series was awarded Decanter’s highest recommendation, the Estate has since performed with stellar consistency, the Horgan family defending their position as one of Australia’s leading wineries.