Margaret River Vintage 2017 Quality & Quantity
Wednesday, February 13, 2019 in News
Vanya Cullen renamed the Cullen flagship red in honour of her mother after her death in 2003. What had been simply ‘Cabernet Merlot’ became ‘Diana Madeline’.
Vanya says her mother would have liked the 2017 Diana Madeline.
‘The length of the vintage gave the grapes time to develop aromatics and flavours not found in the shorter, warmer seasons’, Vanya said.
‘Mum always liked the cooler seasons for Cabernet Sauvignon. The cooler vintages make wines of great elegance and longevity.’
As always, the vintage had its challenges, with March rain to work around - although it was not as wet as had been feared - and that cool, mild summer, which brought with it fears that grapes might struggle to achieve full ripeness.
As it turned out though, 2017 was a vintage that delivered both quality and quantity.
‘It was a surprise and joy beyond our expectations’, says Vanya. ‘It’s fair to say that it was challenging in both the vineyard and winery, however such conditions have delivered great rewards! A great tribute to biodynamic farming, shining even in the unusual vintages.
‘We were hoping for better quantities of grapes with quality to match and after three years of tiny yields we finally had the quantities we were hoping for’.
Cullen Diana Madeline 2017
Cullen Diana Madeline, in 2017 a blend of 81% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Merlot, 6% Petit Verdot and 4% Malbec - Langton’s Classified ‘Exceptional’ - is unquestionably one of Margaret River’s - and Australia’s - finest Cabernet-based wines.
A measure of its consistency is the 98 point ratings it has received from James Halliday for the last five, consecutive vintages.
Expect more top 2017 Chardonnays and Cabernet-based red wines from other leading Margaret River producers - Leeuwin Estate, Moss Wood, Pierro, Vasse Felix, Woodlands, Cape Mentelle, Deep Woods and Voyager, among others, and other top West Australian producers such as Howard Park, Houghton and Larry Cherubino.