We were honoured to have Winsor Dobbin join us to celebrate the Cullen Award for Excellence and partake in the 50 year tastings on the days that followed, here’s an excerpt from his blog:
MONDAY, 14 JUNE 2021: A remarkable 50-year wine journey of inspiration and innovation
When local doctor Kevin Cullen and his physiotherapist wife Di met with their friend Dr John Gladstones in the 1960s to discuss the possibility of a wine business in the sleepy surfing haven of Margaret River they were on the first steps of a magical, inspired and innovative journey.
Earlier this month their daughter Vanya Cullen and her team celebrated 50 years of excellence that has encompassed a movement to organics and then biodynamics, early adoption of screw caps, a carbon-neutral winery and a largely self-sufficient restaurant.
Cullen Wines is today globally recognised as a beacon of eminence with the Kevin John Chardonnay and Diana Cullen Cabernet blend regarded as being among Australia’s icon wines.
Under the slogan “quality, integrity, sustainability” Cullen is now firmly established as an icon.
A celebration dinner and three days of memorable tastings marked the milestone.
In many ways, though, not a lot has changed at all over half a century. The wines remain a work of art, with inspiration coming from the instinct of Vanya and winemaker Andy Barrett-Lennard.
“The wines remain artisanal – there is no recipe,” says Vanya Cullen. “Each year’s wines depend on what the fruit looks like when it makes its journey from the vineyard to the winery.”
Instinct, emotion and the beautiful setting – as well as the biodynamic calendar – all play a large role in what emerges in bottle. There is also an essence of hospitality.