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History

Leeuwin Estate is one of the founding wineries of the now famous Margaret River district.

In 1972, legendary Napa Valley winemaker, Robert Mondavi, first 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 who founded Leeuwin Estate in 1974. The initial vineyards were planted by hand over a five year period from 1975. 

Featuring state-of-the art facilities, the winery building was opened in 1978, celebrating with a trial vintage. Leeuwin enjoyed its first commercial vintage in 1979, and was thrust into the international spotlight when Decanter Magazine gave its highest recommendation to the 1980 "Art Series" Chardonnay in an international blind tasting.

Maintaining a team of highly skilled and dedicated winemakers, Leeuwin Estate is now under the direction of two generations of the founding family.

 

©Leeuwin Estate

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Vineyards

Leeuwin Estate, an iconic producer of premium wines made from grapes grown in the Margaret River region of Western Australia, recognises that its environmental responsibilities are of significant importance to its staff, suppliers, customers and the local community.

As a family business the Estate is committed to managing the environmental effects of its operations through responsible stewardship, with the aim of maintaining a sustainable environment for future generations. To accomplish these goals Leeuwin Estate applies best practice standards for environmental management in all facets of the business.

The Margaret River district features pristine white sandy beaches, spectacular coastline and amazing surf. It is surrounded by majestic karri forests, is nestled within picturesque farmland and enjoys a balmy temperate climate.

Complemented by fine restaurants, art galleries and boutique luxury accommodation, Margaret River has spawned one of the world's most dynamic and innovative wine tourism industries.

Located in the South West of Western Australia, approximately 280 km south of Perth, Leeuwin Estate enjoys a unique environment that is highly complementary to the production of high quality varietal wines.

Less than 6 km from the ocean, Leeuwin Estate is approximately midway between Cape Naturaliste to the north and Cape Leeuwin, Australia’s most southwesterly point.

The area between Cape Naturaliste and Cape Leeuwin is one of the most ancient parts of the world. It became isolated when the continental crust split leaving a 100 km sedimentary basin between it and the mainland. Today the basin contains some of the world’s largest mineral sand deposits.

This granitic island, where the Leeuwin vineyard is located, has weathered over millions of years and now provides us as vignerons with the ancient free draining gravel soils, which are highly complementary to the culture of the vine, as well as promoting great finesse in the wine.

Leeuwin’s rainfall is dictated by the “Roaring 40’s” which move north in our winter and south in our summer, with the oscillation of the earth. 85% of rainfall is therefore received during the cooler six months.

With oceans on three sides only changing water temperature by two degrees between summer and winter, the district has its own microclimate. Leeuwin’s vineyards are therefore protected from extremes of temperature and are frost-free during the critical spring growing period.

The mean daily maximum and minimum temperatures during the summer season are very similar to those of Bordeaux. The significant difference however is that our season opens slightly earlier and closes slightly later, providing us with greater latitude to ripen our fruit, whilst also accommodating earlier ripening varieties such as Chardonnay.

In all, the weather conditions in an “average” year in Margaret River equate to those that Bordeaux only enjoys occasionally in “great” years.

 

©Leeuwin Estate

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8 different wines with 31 vintages

Highlights

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Wine Moments

Here you can see wine moments from tastingbook users.    or    to see wine moments from your world.

 Christer Byklum , Wine Writer (Norway)  tasted  1 wines  from  Leeuwin Estate . In a tasting of  26 wines 

Opus One 2008 / Deep ruby, youthful, cassis, coffee, blueberries. Softer texture, feels very elegant even as it is so young, fresh acidity, ripe tannins, balanced, long length. 94

4m 4d ago

 Julia Harding MW, Wine Writer (United Kingdom)  tasted  1 wines  from  Leeuwin Estate . In a tasting of  25 wines 

Henschke Hill of Grace 2004 / 100% Shiraz grapes from pre-phylloxera material brought from Europe by the early settlers in the mid-1800s and grown in the Eden Valley wine region. Matured in 100% new French (50%) and American (50%) hogsheads for 18 months prior to blending and bottling.
Slightly greyish but deep garnet. Intensely sweet dark cassis fruit plus some cedary leafy notes. Rich and smooth and really plush, generous and silky but also very moreish and juicy. pH 3.6, TA 5.7 g/l,

8m 3h ago

 Juha Lihtonen / The Best Scandinavian Sommelier 2003, Pro (Finland)  tasted  1 wines  from  Leeuwin Estate . In a tasting of  60 wines 

Australia Wine Day 2019 gave a good insight from what is cooking in Wonderland Oz in DownUnder! Fascinating wines from Orange, Adelaide Hills, McLaren Vale and Margaret River. Some classics from Barossa like Grange 2011. Ashton Hills charmed with its Pinot Noirs, especially with the Reserve 2018 - absolutely delicious Burgundy-like pinot! Penley Estate impressed with its silky smooth and elegant red wines, and great label design! Among the exciting experiences were An Approach to Relaxation and Ten Minutes by Tractor, and many more. The best whites of the day were still the Margaret River Chardonnays, especially Leewuin Estate with its Montrachet-flair!

8m 20d ago

 Guido Walter, Wine Importer (Germany)  tasted  1 wines  from  Leeuwin Estate . In a tasting of  11 wines 

Philipponnat Clos de Goisses 1998 / 94 points / Its grape-varieties are predominantly Pinot Noir, with the rest planted exclusively in Chardonnay. Always a vintaged wine, it is vinified according to the tradition upheld by generations of cellar masters and aged for almost ten years in the Philipponnat cellars which are excavated out of chalk. A powerful robust wine with a pronounced taste and lengthy finish.

1y 5m ago

 Thomas Girgensohn, Wine Blogger (Australia)  tasted  1 wines  from  Leeuwin Estate . In a tasting of  17 wines 

It is not often you have an opportunity to taste Chinese wine in the west. Yet, China is the sixth largest producer of wine in the world. Production has been pushed very hard, in particular in the western Xinjiang province. There is now a surplus of Chinese wine, as consumption is still focused on the major cities, where the wealthy prefer imported wine, anyway. And these companies are not well equipped to export their product either.


Broadly speaking, there are three major regions. The coastal region, where vine growing has been going on for a long time, the middle region, and Xinjiang in the west. While the focus is on Xinjiang, conditions are difficult there. The winters are very cold, and the vines need to be buried. This is very labour intensive.

1y 6m ago

 Matteo Cali, Sommelier (United Kingdom)  tasted  1 wines  from  Leeuwin Estate . In a tasting of  6 wines 

2015 Ten minutes by Tractor Coolart Road Pinot Noir Mornington Peninsula. On the appearance it looks pale ruby with a hint of garnet on the edges. On the nose it is very fragrant and pronounced. It shows a primary fruit character focus on red fruits such as ripe Cranberry and ripe strawberry cherry and red currants secondary aromas of
Cinnamon cloves and nutmeg. Some tertiary aromas started to emerge : games, tobacco, savory notes, dried prune. On the palate it is dry and has high acidity with low tannins,  thought hey are very ripe,  the wine has an high level of alcohol and is a medium in body.
The finish is long on the palate,complexity and structure of the wine make this Pinot Noir outstanding.Tasted in 2018 8/10

2y 1m ago

 Christer Byklum , Wine Writer (Norway)  tasted  1 wines  from  Leeuwin Estate . In a tasting of  31 wines 

2009 Shea Willamette Valley Shea Vineyards Estate Pinot Noir:
Ruby. Red berries, fruity, rich, intense, oaky notes, not easy to see the grape influence here. Freshish acidity, ripe tannins, rich and ripe and then very oaky, edgy oaky on the palate, good length. 89points

2y 3m ago

 Stuart Robinson, Wine Blogger (Australia)  tasted  1 wines  from  Leeuwin Estate . In a tasting of  15 wines 

Turkey Flat White Blend 2015  /A blend of Marsanne (63%), Viognier (19%) and Roussanne (18%).Scents of white florals, suggestive stonefruit and of a little vanilla creme patisserie.


Honeyed nuances, a little nougat, under-ripe mandarin segments; zest and gentle spice. Early - judicious - picking has given a line of acid about which layers of texture hang, like mille-feuille of flavour and mouthfeel.



Good length, carried about acid, a little toastiness. Enough about it to make it one to both seek to consume and to savour. 91

3y 3m ago

 Erin Larkin, Wine Writer (Australia)  tasted  1 wines  from  Leeuwin Estate . In a tasting of  10 wines 

Pierre Peters ‘Les Chetillons’ Blanc de Blancs 2008, 99 points /Nervously close to perfect.  I can’t think of a thing I would add or take away to this complete wine.  It is walking on a tightrope of acidity, tension, expansive minerality and restrained fruit.  There is finesse and power here at once. Devastatingly, my one and only bottle.  But worth it.  INCREDIBLE.

3y 3m ago

 Stuart Robinson, Wine Blogger (Australia)  tasted  5 wines  from  Leeuwin Estate . In a tasting of  16 wines 

Chapel Hill Cabernet Sauvignon 2011 / Vintage 2011 is not exactly the elephant in the room not talked of, but there is a tendency for the vintage to be written off with a broad stroke that covers all regions and producers. Following that English idiom, one must doff one's cap to the team at Chapel Hill for the considerately crafted range of reds out of the vintage. The cooler rendition of the Shiraz from McLaren Vale, the lighter touch of the Mourvédre - all are good drinking. Here to those we can add the Cabernet Sauvignon.


Cedar, creamy oak, a touch dusty with hints of red fruit. Given some time to explore, we see a little more char, toasty, black fruit and hints of dark chocolate. Medium to full bodied, tannin is fine-grained. Slight hint of chicory bitterness initially, that makes way for creamy oak.


Length is good. It's a wine that certainly grew in appeal as it settled into itself. It's a clean rendition, a touch chewy at times, something to get into. 89 - could happily go a point higher.

3y 4m ago

 Erin Larkin, Wine Writer (Australia)  tasted  9 wines  from  Leeuwin Estate . In a tasting of  9 wines 

“2013 Leeuwin Estate Art Series Chardonnay – This year, the label features the artwork of Tim McMonagle, entitled 'A Fixed Address (fish & marron)'. Previous releases have been true to the established Leeuwin chardonnay style: Rich, intense, powerful and full. The 2011 was a slight deviation in their modern era style, where Leeuwin released a leaner, finer and more spiced chardonnay. The 2012 was spiced, round, tertiary and rich. The 2013 is a continuation of this more fruit/mineral driven style, and very happy about it I am. Red currant, kiwi fruit, pink grapefruit, white peach, salted lemons, ash, white and black pepper, hints of fresh thyme, pistachio and saffron. The palate is fresh and textural – pure pleasure. Plush and ready for drinking now. This has focus, power, density and precision. It’s alive. Absolutely consistent in texture and flavour from first sip to aftertaste. Oak perfectly married to the fruit already. Paul Atwood has created a chardonnay of opulence and minerality: touché Leeuwin. Gorgeous. 96 points”

4y 3m ago

 Christer Byklum , Wine Writer (Norway)  tasted  1 wines  from  Leeuwin Estate . In a tasting of  40 wines 

“Penfolds Grange 1976 - 100 points.
Deep ruby and a 2mm of garnet rim. Tobacco, pepper, syrah as from the very best of Rhone, a complexity you only dream about, it's so intence and huge in complexity, you just can't take it apart and describe it, it's too much, the brain shut's down, and just enjoy, immensely! Acidity is increadible, fresh and lively, exceptional balance, great tannin structure, like falling crisp snow, one of the most complex wines I have had, increadible long finish, my best syrah/shiraz, only startting to show signs of maturation, aftertaste for minutes and minutes, keep at least another 20 years if you're lucky.”

4y 6m ago

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