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Leeuwin Estate Prelude Chardonnay Margaret River 2022

Best Sellers Collection by Philglas & Swiggot

  • Size: 750ml
  • Vintage: 2022
  • ABV: 13,5%
  • Origin: Margaret River/Australia
  • Grapes: Chardonnay

Description

Another legendary producer, this is your benchmark Australian Chardonnay that helped put the style on the map.

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.

Leading Australian wine commentator, James Halliday, included Leeuwin Estate in his Top 100 Australian Wineries, writing “For long regarded as one of the very greatest producers of chardonnay in the Margaret River, and indeed the whole of Australia: this is one of the proudest family-owned estates in the country….Leeuwin Estate is not just a chardonnay producer. Its cabernet sauvignon is of very high quality, its shiraz likewise. The second label Prelude Chardonnay is better than many higher-priced wines from other producers, and the Riesling sells out every year…Siblings Margaret River Sauvignon Blanc Semillon is yet another string to the Leeuwin bow”.

The latest vintage of Prelude is one of the finest to date. Cool crushed fruit with some skin contact, inclusive of Gin Gin, Davis and Bernard clones. The juice was settled for 3 days, racked, and underwent fermentation both with inoculated yeast and naturally. 100% of the juice was barrel fermented in French Coopered barriques, with 40% being new and the lees stirred regularly. After 10 months in barrels, individual parcels were blended, lightly fined, stabilized and bottled.

An aromatic and perfumed nose, with lemon blossom, chamomile and black tea. Nashi pear, white nectarine, lemon flesh and grapefruit provide the foundation of the fruit spectrum. Subtleties of iodine, graphite, cinnamon, brioche and grilled almonds are neatly packaged together, giving delicate complexity. The palate is energetic, with concentrated fruits of cut lime, pear, custard apple. A delicately textured and layered mid-palate is defined by natural laced acidity, creating the corridor. Savoury notes and spice work in symmetry, carrying a long finish with gentle talc-like tension.

“This is the second string to Leeuwin's imperious Art Series cuvee, yet few corners are cut. A bit broader texturally and of more fruity immediacy. Think canned peach, glazed quince, orange verbena, nougat and beautifully placed oak, gently caressing the seams. Mid-weighted and packed with flavor and integrity, this drinks far better than many producer's top wines. Drink or hold briefly.”
93 points Ned Goodwin MW, JamesSuckling.com November 2023