93 Points Robert Parker
The 1999 Art Series Chardonnay displays a toastier style with notes of brioche, brown sugar sprinkled oatmeal and chopped cashews over dried mango slices and apricots. Full and opulent with medium to high acid, a suggestion of minerals comes through in the long finish. Mature now, it should continue to cellar to 2014.
Source: Robert Parker (Robert Parker Wine Advocate) by Lisa Perrotti-Brown. October, 2010
97 Points James Halliday
When I first tasted this wine, I lost no time in buying some. Brilliant pale straw-green, the restrained barrel ferment and delicate fruit of the bouquet gives no hint of the 14.5 degrees alcohol, nor does the youthful, vibrant grapefruit, nectarine and melon fruit of the palate. Destined to be one of the greatest Leeuwins. Drink to 2019.
Source: James Halliday. October, 2002
RP 93 points: "The 1999 Art Series Chardonnay displays a toastier style with notes of brioche, brown sugar sprinkled oatmeal and chopped cashews over dried mango slices and apricots. Full and opulent with medium to high acid, a suggestion of minerals comes through in the long finish. Mature now, it should continue to cellar to 2014. ||ÔÇ£Back in the 1970s Margaret River was dying ÔÇô the wine business established it,ÔÇØ Leeuwin EstateÔÇÖs Denis Horgan told me as we gazed over his impressive winery, restaurant and concert hall operation. ÔÇ£This area used to have one of the highest unemployment rates in the country previously.ÔÇØ Have a brief drive around Margaret River and its environs and youÔÇÖll soon know that the regionÔÇÖs lifeblood these days is wine and its heart is HorganÔÇÖs Leeuwin Estate, established in 1975. Never one to do things by half, HorganÔÇÖs continually high standards at Leeuwin maintains it as one of the regionÔÇÖs benchmarks. Since Bob CartwrightsÔÇÖs retirement as Chief Winemaker, Paul Atwood, who is a bit of an institution himself having already made wine there for more than 13 years, has adeptly filled his shoes. Prelude Chardonnay is made just like the Art Series but is blended from a selection of cuvees for earlier drinking. It receives no indigenous ferments and no oxidative handling. The key difference is that there is more forward fruit in Prelude than the Art Series, which is of course designed to age. About 2/3 of the total Chardonnay blocks are fermented in 100% new oak, so that equates to around 40% new oak on the Prelude and it usually spends about 1 year in barrel. The Chardonnays donÔÇÖt normally go through malo-lactic but for example Paul told me they did use 25% in 2006 because it was a cool vintage. The final difference is that Prelude uses some purchased fruit whereas Art Series is always 100% estate grown.||Importer: Old Bridge Cellars, Napa, CA"
93 points. Source: Robert Parker (Wine Advocate) "October, 2010" by Lisa Perrotti-Brown