It’s a great honour and privilege to be named the 2020 Halliday Wine Companion Winemaker of the Year. A heartfelt thanks to my team: Matthew Dermody in the vineyard, Andy Barrett-Lennard in the winery and everyone at Cullen Wines who has contributed to this, past and present.
I would like to thank James Halliday AM and his team Jane Faulkner, Jeni Port and Ned Goodwin MW for choosing me and the Cullen team as winners. It was such an incredible evening at the awards night to win both Winemaker of the Year and Varietal Winner of the Cabernet Sauvignon and Family with the 2017 Diana Madeline! Hardie Grant and the Halliday team hosted an amazing night, thank you. Thanks to my parents, Diana Madeline and Kevin John, and my family. A huge thank you to the Team at Cullens and the Cullen Wines board for all your hard work and support, I am very grateful! It is deeply pleasing to have this award representing quality wine made sustainably, I feel very blessed!
I would also like to extend my congratulations to all the other winners on the evening, being: Jim Barry Wines (Winery of the Year), Yangarra Estate (Wine of the Year), Shy Susan Wines (Best New Winery), Dal Zotto Wines (Dark Horse of the Year) and Domaine Naturaliste (Best Value Winery of the Year). I would also like to congratulate the producers from our Margaret River Region who were varietal winners, being: Flowstone (Sauvignon Blanc), Moss Wood (Chardonnay), Stella Bella Suckfizzle (Sauvignon Blanc Semillon) and Deep Woods (Cabernet Sauvignon).
I feel very grateful and on top of the world, my feet haven’t touched the ground yet. It has been a love story about the earth, nature, great wine, family, friends and colleagues. With 2019 marking my 30 years as Chief Winemaker milestone, to now receive this acknowledgment is simply wonderful, and exciting all at the same time!