||97% Cabernet Sauvignon, 3% Malbec
||Margaret River, Western Australia
||Deep ruby red
Black and blue fruits dominate the palate, followed by complex spices. A wine full of energy with notes of olive, dried thyme, cedar and minerality. Elegant and beautifully balanced.
Intensity and density pairs with purity and elegance. Predominately a blackcurrant thread on the palate, there is so much offering in layers. Bold, rich and contoured primary fruits engage with bright, almost mineral acidity, contoured with olive tapenade, iodine and sage. The tannins are silky, finely polishing the shape and finish on the palate.
An outstanding vintage for Cabernet Sauvignon in Margaret River.
Winter of 2017 was met with typically wet and windy conditions. Chardonnay was the first variety to experience bud burst in late August, followed by the Riesling and Cabernet through September. Flowering in all varieties was approximately ten days earlier than in vintage 2017. Conditions in spring were generally mild, with the usual showery and sunny periods resulting in excellent set across most varieties.
Temperatures throughout summer were warm, with very few hot days. Veraison occurred two weeks earlier than in 2017. 2018 was a spectacular year for flowering of the local marri trees, which kept birds occupied elsewhere and away from the ripening vineyards. Harvest commenced with the Riesling in the middle of February while Shiraz and Cabernet harvest commenced in the last week of March and into the third week of April.
After early leaf removing across the fruit zone to let in the sunshine and thinning of fruit where necessary, the reds were able to hang well into a rain free April. The slow autumn ripening allowed Shiraz and Cabernet to develop intense and vibrant fruit flavours with excellent tannin ripeness.
After individual berry sorting and cold soaking, fermentation took place in closed, static fermenters at temperatures between 26C-30C with extraction by pumping over each individual parcel three times daily. After malolactic fermentation entirely in barrels and 9 months of barrel maturation, separate parcels were blended for further maturation in French Bordelaise coopered barriques with seasonal rackings. This wine spent 22 months in total in oak.
“Truly elegant in every way. One sip of this wine and I can feel its beauty. It has a pure fruited translucency and the whisper of pine needles, a mint-cold freshness, tannins reaching long, tenacious, slender from top to bottom, embedded through the fruit. A wine with a sweet heart, taut purpose, exquisitely formed clarity.” 17.5 points.
Tamlyn Currin, JancisRobinson.com, 23 April 2022
Deep crimson. Classical blackcurrant cedar aromas with lifted espresso, roasted chestnut notes. Inky deep and beautifully concentrated wine with dense blackcurrant, dark plum, dark chocolate flavours, fine grainy/chocolaty tannins and perfectly integrated cedar oak. A superb grainy firm finish and mineral length. A great Leeuwin Estate Cabernet. Now – 2040”. 99 points.
Andrew Caillard MW, The Vintage Journal, March 2022
“One of the last wines released from the great 2018 Margaret River vintage, this has to be one of the finest cabernets yet from Leeuwin. Supremely balanced and poised with stylish lines through to a very long finish. Scented aromas of cedar and leafy blackcurrant with a trace of oyster shell. The palate is quite brilliant with the distinct chalky tannins and super fine grained oak holding the fruit gently to its extended finish. Great wine here.” 97 points.
Ray Jordan, WinePilot.com, March 2022